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Full text of "The lady of Lyons: or, Love and pride. A play in five acts; as performed at the Theatre Royal, Covent Garden"

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• SANTA BARBARA " 



C. IL OGDEN 
THE 



LADY OF LYONS: 



OR, 



LOVE AND PRIDE. 

^ flag, 

IN FIVE ACTS. 

AS PERFORMED AT THE THEATRE ROYAL, COVENT GARDEN. 

Br THE AH THOU 

OF 

« EUGENE ARAM," "THE LAST DAYS OF POMPEII," 
"EIENZI," ETC. 



LONDON: 
CHAPMAN AND HALL, 193 PICCADILLY. 
1853. 



UNIVERSITY 01'' CAi '! UK^. 
SANTA BARBARA 



PR 

M 

(855 



TO 



TPIE AUTHOR OF "ION," 



WHOSE GENIUS AND EXAMPLE HAVE ALIKE CONTRIBUTED 



TOWARDS THE REGENERATION 



^\ft i^ational Brama, 



THIS PLAY IS INSCRIBED. 



PREFACE. 



AN indistinct recollection of the verj pretty little tale, 
called " The Bellows-Mender," suggested the plot of this 
Drama. The incidents are, however, greatly altered from 
those in the tale, and the characters entirely re-cast. 

Having long had a wish to illustrate certain periods of the 
French history, so, in the selection of the date in which the 
scenes of this play are laid, I saw that the time of the Re- 
public was the one in which the incidents were rendered most 
probable, in which the probationary career of the hero could 
well be made sufficiently rapid for dramatic effect, and in 
which the character of the time itself was depicted by the 
agencies necessary to the conduct of the narrative. For 
during the early years of the first and most brilliant suc- 
cesses of the French Republic, in the general ferment of 
society, and the brief equalization of ranks, Claude's high- 
placed love, his ardent feelings, his unsettled principles, — - 
the sti'uggle between which makes the passion of this drama, 
• — his ambition, and his career, were phenomena that cha- 
racterized the age, and in which the spirit of the nation went 
along with the extravagance of the individual. In some re- 
spects, Claude Melnotte is a type of that restless, brilliant. 



Vlll PREFACE. 

and evanescent generation that sprung up from the ashes 
the terrible Revolution, — men born to be agents of the genius 
of Napoleon, to accomplish the most marvellous exploits, 
and to leave but little of permanent triumph and solid advan- 
tage to the succeeding race. 

In the selection of this period I can honestly say, how- 
ever, that I endeavoured, as much as possible, to avoid every 
political allusion applicable to our own time and land, — our 
own party prejudices and passions. How difficult a task 
this was, a reference to any drama in which the characters 
are supposed to live under Republican institutions will 
prove ! There is scarcely a single play, the scene of which 
is laid in Rome, in Greece, in Switzerland, wherein political 
allusions and political declamations are not carefully elabo- 
rated as the most striking and telling parts of the per- 
formance.* 

The principal fault of this Play, as characteristic of the 
time, is, perhaps, indeed, the too cautious avoidance of all 
those references to liberty and equality in which, no doubt, 
every man living at that day would have hourly indulged. 
The old and classical sentiment, that vii-tue is nobility, con- 
tains the pith of the political creed announced by Claude 
Melnotte ; and that sentiment is the founder, and often the 
motto, of aristocracy itself. In fact, the enthusiasm of 
Claude is far more that of a soldier than a citizen jf and it 

• The noble tragedy of " Ion" has for its very plot, its very catastrophe, 
almost its very moral, the abolition of royalty and the establishment of a Re- 
public ; — yet no one would suspect Serjeant Talfourd of designing the overthrc m 
of the British Constitution. 

t The allusion to the rapidity of promotion in the French army -was absolutely 
necessary to the conduct of the story ; and, after all, it is expressed in language 
hoirowed and adapted from that very Jacobinical authority, Horatio Viscoun-t 




PREFACE. ix 

is not the reasoner nor the politician, but the man, with his 
feelings and his struggles, with whom the audience sympa- 
thize when he exults in the redemption of his name. It is 
perfectly clear that neither the English author nor the Eng- 
lish audience can recognise much in harmony with their 
own sentiments, when Claude declares that the gold he has 
won in the campaign in Italy " is hallowed in the cause of 
nations !" The question for us to consider is, not whether an 
Englislnnan or a philosopher would think that there was any 
sanctity in the principles of that brilliant war, but whether 
an enthusiastic soldier under Napoleon would not have be- 
lieved it. Our national prepossessions and prejudices, — our 
closeness to an age, the false glitter of wliich we can so well 
detect, — alike, I hope, guard us against all political infection 
from a play cast in a time when the coming shadow of a 
military despotism was already darkening the prospects of an 
unwise and weak Republic : and if there be any where the 
antipodes to the French Jacobin of the last century, it is the 
English Reformer of the present. For my own part, I never 
met with any one, however warm a lover of abstract liberty, 
who had a sympathy with the principles of the Du-ectory 
and the Government of M. Barras. But enough in contra- 
diction of a charge which the whole English public have 
ridiculed and scouted, and which has sought to introduce 
into the free domains of art all the miserable calumnies and 
wretched spleen of party hostilities. 

Nelson. Nor is it easy to conceive how the sentiment — that merit, not money, 
should purchase promotion in the army — can he called a Republican doctrine ; 
since, though it certainly did pervade the French Republican army, it inculcates 
a principle far more common in despotic countries than under free institutions. 
We must look to the annals of the East for the most frequent examples of the 
rise of fortunate soldiers. 



PREFACE 



The faults of the Play itself I do not seek to defend : such 
faults are the fair and just materials for criticism and cavil. 
I am perfectly aware that it is a very slight and trivial per- 
formance, and, being written solely for the stage, may pos- 
sess but a feeble interest in the closet. It was composed 
with a twofold object. In the first place, sympathizing with 
the enterprise of Mr. Macready, as Manager of Covent 
Garden, and believing that many of the higher interests of the 
Drama were involved in the success or failure of an enterprise 
equally hazardous and disinterested, I felt, if I may so presume 
to express myself, something of the Brotherhood of Art ; and 
it was only for Mr. Macready to think it possible that I 
might serve him to induce me to make the attempt. 

Secondly, in that attempt I was mainly anxious to see 
whether or not certain critics had truly declared that it was 
not in my power to attain the art of dramatic construction 
and theatrical effect. I felt, indeed, that it was in this that 
a writer, accustomed to the narrative class of composition, 
would have the most both to learn and to wjdearn. Accord- 
ingly, it was to the development of the j^lot and the arrange- 
ment of the incidents that I directed my chief attention ; — • 
and I sought to throw whatever belongs to poetry less into 
the diction and the " felicity of words" than into the con- 
struction of the story, the creation of the characters, and the 
spirit of the pervading sentiment. With this acknowledg- 
ment, may I hazard a doubt whether any more ornate or 
more elevated style of language would be so appropriate to 
the rank of the characters introduced, or would leave so 
clear and uninterrupted an effect to the strength and pro- 
gress of that domestic interest which (since I do not an-ogate 



PREFACE. XI 

the entire credit of its invention) I may perhaps be allowed 
to call the chief attraction of the Play ? 

Having, on presenting this drama to the theatre, confided 
the secret of its authorship to the Manager alone, — having, 
therefore, induced no party — no single friend or favourer 
of my own — to attend the early performances which decided 
its success, — I hope that on my side " The Lady of Lyons" 
has been fairly left to the verdict of the public ; — let me now 
also hope an equal fairness from those who may be tempted 
to condemn the politician in the author. Do not let the 
lovers of the Drama discourage other men, immeasurably 
more fitted than myself to adorn it, solely because in a free 
country they may, like the Author of this Play, have ventured 
elsewhere to express political opinions. 



London, February 26, 1838. 



DRAMATIS PERSON.^. 



AS FIRST PERFORMED AT THE THEATRE ROYAL, COVENT GARDEN. 



Beauseant {a rich gentleman of Lyons, in Iove\ -n^ Fit m 
with, and refused by, Pauline Deschappelles) J 

Glavis [his friend, also a rejected suitor to\ ^«^ Tvii7Ar.owo 
Pauline) j 

Colonel, afterwards General, Damas {cousin to^ 

Madame Deschappelles, and an officer in the r Mr. Bartley. 
French army) ) 

Monsieur Deschappelles (a Lyonnese merchant, \ »,, Stricki and 
father to Paulitie) J 

Landlord of the Golden Lion Mr. Yarnold. 

Caspar Mr. Diddear. 

Claude Melnotte Mr. Macreauy. 

First Officer 

Second O^cer VMessrs. Howe, Pritchard, and Roberts. 

Third Officer 

Servants, Notary, ^c. 

Madame Deschappelles Mrs. Clifford. 

Pauline (Jier daughter) Miss Helen Faucit. 

The widow Melnotte {mother to Claude)... Mrs. Griffith. 

^&nei (the innkeeper' s daughter) .... Mrs. East. 

Marian {maid to Pauline) Miss Garrick. 



Scene — Lyons and the neighbourhood. 
Tme— 1795— 1798. 



THE 



LADY OF LYONS 

OR, 

LOVE AND PRIDE. 



ACT I. 

SCENE 1. 



A room in the lionse of M.Deschappelles, at Lyons. Pauline 
reclhiing on a sofa ,v* Marian, her maid, fanning her. — 
Flowers and notes on a table beside the sofa. — Madame 
Deschappelles seated. — The Gardens are seen from the 



open 



window. 



MADAME DESCHAP. 

Marian, put that rose a little more to the left. — (Marian 
alters the position of a rose in Pauline's hair.) — Ah, so ! — 
that improves the air, — the tournure, — the je ne sais quoil — 
You are certainly very handsome, child ! — quite my style ; — - 
I don't wonder that you make such a sensation ! — Old, young, 
rich, and poor, do homage to the Beauty of Lyons ! — Ah, we 
live again in our children, — especially when they have our 
eyes and complexion ! 

PAULINE {languidly). 

Dear mother, you spoil your Pauline ! {Aside) I wish 

I knew who sent me these flowers ! 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

No, child 1 — if I praise you, it is only to inspire you with a 
proper ambition. — You are born to make a gre?.t marriage. 
— Beauty is valuable or worthless according as you invest 
the property to the best advantage. — Marian, go and order ^ , 
the carriage ! [Exit Marian.^. J i 

PAULINE. 

Who can it be that sends me, every day, these beautiful 
flowers ? — how sweet they are ! 



%'X 



I 



14 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act i. 

Enter Servant. ^ t-^-CZ-, 

SERVANT. r~ .,r> y /(Jf 

Monsieur Beauseant, Madam. J^' rM^-^< 

MAD AME^E SCHAP.^^ 

Let him enter. /^^aulme, this is another offer ! — I know it 
is ! — Your father ^ould engage an additional clerk to keep 
the account-Look of your conquests. 

Enter Beauseant. Z^ ^^ £z1 

BEAUSEANT. 

Ah, ladies, how fortunate I am to find you at home !- 



{Aside) How lovely she looks ! — It is a great sacrifice I make 
in marrying into a family in trade ! — they will be eternally 

grateful ! {Aloud) Madame, you will permit me a word 

'/?t*£^_with your charming daughter. {Approaches Pauline, who 

^ rises disdainfulltf))r Mademoiselle, I have ventured to wait 

upon you, in a nope that you must long since have divined. 
Last night, when you outshone all the beauty of Lyons, you 
completed your conquest over me ! You know that my for- 
tune is not exceeded by any estate in the province, — you 
know that, but for the Revolution, which has defrauded me 
of my titles, I should be noble. May I, then, trust that you 
will not reject my alliance ? I offer you my hand and heart. 

PAULINE {aside). 

He has the air of a man who confers a favour ! — {Aloud) 

Sir, you are very condescending — I thank you humbly ; but, 

being duly sensible of my own demerits, you must allow me to 

decline the honour you propose. [Curtsies^ and turns away. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Decline ! impossible ! — you are not serious ! — Madame, 
suffer me to appeal to you. I am a suitor for your daugh- 
ter's hand — the settlements shall be worthy her beauty and 
my station. May I wait on M. Deschappelles ? 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

M. Deschappelles never interferes in the domestic arrange- 
ments, — you are very obliging. If you were still a marquis, 
or if my daughter were intended to marry a commoner, — 
why, perhaps, we might give you the preference. 

BEAUSEANT. C 

A commoner ! — we are all commoners in France now. 

MADAME DESCHAP. /_ O 

In France, yes ; but there is a nobility still left in the other 
countries in Europe. We are quite aware of your good qua- 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 15 

lities, and don't doubt that you will find some lady more 
suitalDle to your pretensions. We shall be always happy to 
see you as an acquaintance, M. Beauseant ! — My dear child, 
the carriage will be here presently. C,1/rJ^-c^ /o A^ ^z-t^^ 'Z^y<^ 

BEAUSEANT. 

Say no more, Madame ! — say no more ! — (Aside) Refused ! 
and by a merchant's daughter ! — refused ! It will be all over 
Lyons before sunset ! — I will go and bury myself in my 
chateau, study philosophy, and turn woman-hater. Refused ! 
they ought to be sent to a madhouse ! — Ladies, I have the 
honour to wish you a very good morning. [£^xit. /L U 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

How forward these men are ! — I think, child, we kept up 
our dignity. Any girl, however inexperienced, knows how 
to accept an offer, but it requires a vast deal of address to 
refuse one with proper condescension and disdain. I used 
to practise it at school with the dancing-master I 

EnUr Damas. ^ U £1 

DAMAS. 

Good morning, cousin Deschappelles. — Well, Pauline, are 
you recovered from last night's ball 1 — So many triumphs 
must be very fatiguing. Even M. Glavis sighed most 
piteously when you departed ; — but that might be the effect 
of the supper. 

PAULINE. A 

M. Glavis, indeed ! 

/ a 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

M. Glavis .? — as if my daughter would think of M. Glavis ! 
DAMAS. C^ 

Hey-day ! — why not ? — His father left him a very pretty 
fortune, and his birth is higher than yours, cousin Deschap- 
pelles. But pei'haps you are looking to M. Beauseant, — his 
father was a marquis before the Revolution, 

PAULINE. 

M. Beauseant ! — Cousin, you delight in tormenting me \ /^^-o C^ 

MADAME DESCHAP. ^^^ t. /^ U < o 

Don't mind him, Pauline ! — Cousin Damas, you have no 
susceptibility of feeling, — there is a certain indelicacy in all 
your ideas. — M. Beauseant knows already that he is no 
match for my daughter ! 

DAMAS. 

Pooh ! pooh ! one would think you intended your daughter 
to many a prince ! 



W THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act i. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

Well, and if I did ? — what then ? — Many a foreign prince — 

DAMAS {interrupting her). 
Foreign prince ! — foreign fiddlestick ! — you ought to be 
ashamed of such nonsense at your time of life 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

My time of life ! — That is an expression never applied to 
any lady till she is sixty-nine and three-quarters j — and only 
then by the clergyman of the parish. 

Enter Servant. ^ U h. 

SEPvVANT. 

Madame, the carriage is at the door. 

MADAME DESCHAP. i* ^-^-Ij c"^^ 

Come, child, put on your baBaet^you really have a very 
thorough-bred air — not at all like your poor father. — {fondly) 
Ah, you little coquette ! when a young lady is always making 
mischief, it is a sure sign that she takes after her mother ! 

PAULINE. 

Good day, cousin Damas— and a better humour to you. — ^y^ct' 
( Going back to the table and taking the flowers) Who could .^^ 

have sent me these flowers ? ^^ '"' 

r^A'?«#tt^ Pauline «*»«?mlADAME Deschappelles. 

DAMAS. A^ C 

That would be an excellent girl if her head had not been 
turned. I fear she is now become incorrigible ! Zounds, 
what a lucky fellow I am to be still a bachelor ! They may 
talk of the devotion of the sex — but the most faithful attach- 
ment in life is that of a woman in love — with herself ! {Exit. ^ ^ C-. 



SCENE IL 

The exterior of a small Village Inn — sign, the Golden Lion — 
a few leagues from Lyons, which is seen at a distance. /P 

BEAUSEANT {behind the scenes). \ 2- ^ 
Yes, you may bait the horses, we shall rest here an hour. 

Enter Beauseant and Glavis. ^ 2 F^ 

GLAVIS. 

Really, my dear Beauseant, consider that I have promised 
to spend a day or two with you at your chateau — that I am 
quite at your mercy for my entertainment — and yet you are 



SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 17 

as silent and as gloomy as a mute at a funeral, or an Eng- 
lishman at a party of pleasure. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Bear with me ! — the fact is, that I am miserable. 

GLAVIS. 

You — the richest and gayest bachelor in Lyons ' 

BEAUSEANT. 

It is because I am a bachelor that I am miserable. — Thou 
knowest Pauline — the only daughter of the rich merchant, 
Mons. Deschappelles ? 

GLAVIS. 

Know her! — who does not? — as pretty as Venus, and as 
proud as Juno. 

BEAUSEANT. /- C 

Her taste is worse than her pride. — {Drawing himself up.) j 

Know, Glavis, she has actually refused met Ci r ^^ c"^* ■ "^'- ^ 

GLAVIS {aside). 
So she has me ! — very consoling ! In all cases of heart- 
ache, the application of another man's disappointment draws 
out the pain and allays the irritation. — {Aloud.) Refiised 
you ! and wherefore ? 

BEAUSEANT. 

I know not, unless it be because the Revolution swept 
away my father's title of Marquis, — and she will not marry 
a commoner. Now, as we have no noblemen left in France, 
— as we are all citizens and equals, she can only hope that, 
in spite of the war, some English Milord or German Count 
will risk his life, by coming to Lyons, that this^//e du Rotu- 
rier may condescend to accept him. Refused me, and with 
scorn ! — By heaven, I'll not submit to it tainely : — I'm in a 
perfect fever of moi*tification and rage. — Refuse me, indeed ! C^<^'^ < 

GLAVIS. 

Be comforted, my dear fellow, — I will tell you a secret. 
For the same reason she refused me ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

You ! — that's a very different matter ! But give me your 
hand, Glavis, — we'll think of some plan to humble her. 
Mille Diables ! I should like to see her married to a strolling 
player ! 

Enter Landlord and his Daughter //wn the Inn. /^ 

LANDLORD. 

Youl servant, citizen Beauseant, — servant, sir. Perhaps 

B 



^^ 



18 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act i. 

you will take dinner before you proceed to your chateau ; our 
larder is most plentifully supplied. 

BEAUSEANT. 

I have no appetite. 

GLAVIS. 

Nor I. Still it is bad travelling on an empty stomach. 
What have you got ? ( Takes and looks over the bill of fare.) 

(Shout without) — "Long live the Prince I — Long live the 
Prince !" 

BEAUSEANT. 

The Prince ! — vs^hat Prince is that ? I thought we had no 
princes left in France. _ - /^ • rJi / 

LANDLORD, i^,^ ^ '^'^ ^ )1 

Ha, ha ! the lads always call him Prince. He has just 
won the prize in the shooting-match, and they are taking 
him home in triumph. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Him ! and who's Mr. Him ? 

LANDLORD. 

Who should he be but the pride of the village, Claude 
Melnotte ? — Of course you have heard of Claude Melnotte ? 

GLAVIS {giving hack the hill of fare), tf ?u^i^cX l^ 

Never had that honour. Soup — ragout of hare — roast 
chicken, and, in short, all you have ! /^v t ^ 'i^<-«^t ^ 

BEAUSEANT. fL 

The son of old Melnotte, the gardener ? 

LANDLORD.;^ 

Exactly so — a wonderful young man. 

BEAUSEANT. 

How wondeiful ? — Are his cabbages better than other 
people's ? 

LANDLORD. 

Nay, he don't garden any more ; his father left him well 
off. He's only a genus. 

GLAVIS. 

A what ? 

LANDLORD. 

A genus ! — a man who can do every thing in life except 
any thing that's useful ; — that's a genus. 

BEAUSEANT. 

You raise my curiosity ; — proceed. 



SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 19 

LANDLORD. 

Well, then, about four years ago, old Melnotte died and 
left his son well to do in the world. We then all observed 
that a great change came over young Claude : he took to 
reading and Latin, and hired a professor from Lyons, who 

liarL<in innp.1i in ]^i<^ liParl tViof Tip woja. f&rccd tQ WOar ft gVOatr 

fell bottom wig - to oovor it r Then he took a fencing-master, 
and a dancing-master, and a music-master; and then he 
learned to paint ; and at last it was said that young Claude 
was to go to Paris, and set up for a painter. The lads 
laughed at him at first ; but he is a stout fellow, is Claude, 
and as brave as a lion, and soon taught them to laugh the 
wrong side of their mouths ; and now all the boys swear by 
him, and all the girls pray for him. 

BEAUSEANT. 

A promising youth, certainly ! And why do they call him 
Prince ? 

LANDLORD. 

Partly because he is at the head of them all, and partly 
because he has such a proud way with him, and wears such 
fine clothes — and, in short, looks like a prince. 

BEAUSEANT. 

And what could have turned the foolish fellow's brain .? 
The Revolution, I suppose ? 

LANDLORD. 

Yes — the Revolution that turns us all topsy-turvy — the 
revolution of Love. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Romantic young Cory don ! And with whom is he in love ? 

LANDLORD. 

Why — but it is a secret, gentlemen. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Oh ! certainly. 

LANDLORD. 

Why, then, I hear fr-om his mother, good soul ! that it is 
no less a person than the Beauty of Lyons, Pauline Deschap- 
pelles. 

BEAUSEANT AND GLAVIS. 

Ha ! ha ! — Capital ! 

LANDLORD. 

You may laugh, but it is as true as I stand here. 

BEAUSEANT. 

And what does the Beauty of Lyons say to his suit ? 

B 2 



20 THE LADY OF LYONS; [act i 

LANDLORD. 

Lord, sir, she never even condescended to look at him, 
though when he was a boy he worked in her father's garden. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Are you sure of that ? 

LANDLORD, 

His mother says that Mademoiselle does not know him by 
sight. u^jt\M /i-^'^ ^ ■" ijC"^-U^^^ 

/ BEAUSEANT {taking Glavis aside) 

I have hit it, — I have it ; — hare is our revenge ! Here is 
a prince for our haughty damsel. Do you take me ? 

GLAVIS. 

Deuce take me if I do ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

Blockhead ! — it's as clear as a map. What if we could 
make this elegant clown pass himself oflf as a foreign prince ? 
— lend him money, clothes, equijDage for the purpose .'' — make 
him propose to Pauline .'' — marry Pauline ? Would it not 
be delicious ? 

GLAVIS, 

Ha ! ha ! — Excellent : But how shall we support the 
necessary expenses of his highness ? 

BEAUSEANT. 

Pshaw ! Revenge is worth a much larger sacrifice than a 

l^ few hundred louis ;^as for details, my valet is the trustiest 

i^ fellow in the world, and shall have the appointment of his 

highness's establishment. Let's go to him at once, and see 

if he be really this Admirable Crichton. ^^<_^ u L ^ 

GLAVIS. ^ 

With all my heart ; — ^but the dinner ? 

BEAUSEANT. 

Always thinking of dinner ! Hark ye, Landlord, how far 
is it to young Melnotte's cottage ? I should like to see such 
a prodigy. 

LANDLORD. 

Turn down the lane, — then strike across the common, — 
and you will see his mother's cottage. 

BEAUSEANT. 

True, he lives with his mother. — {Aside.) We will not trust 
to an old woman's discretion ; better send for him hither. 
I'll just step in and write him a note. Come, Glavis. ^|^ /^ i<^ ^ ^ 



x^ 



SCENE III.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 21 

GLAVIS. 

Yes, — BeauseantjGlavis, and Co., manufacturers of princes, 
wholesale and retail, — an uncommonly genteel line of busi- 
ness. But why so grave ? 

BEAUSEANT. 

You think only of the sport, — I of the revenge. 

[Exeunt within the Inn. L / /:: 



SCENE III. 

The Interior o/'Melnotte's Cottage ; flowers placed here and 
there ; a guitar on an oaken table, with a -portfolio, ^c. ; 
a picture on an easil, covered by a curtain ; fencing -foils 
crossed over the mantel-piece; an attempt at refinement in 
spite of the homeliness of the furniture, Sfc. ; a staircase to 
the right conducts to the upper story. 

(Shout without.) — " Long live Claude Melnotte !" " Long 
live the Prince !" , , _ 

the widow melnotte. ^''^^'Vi'^ \c ,1 -^ — 
Hark ! — there's my dear son ; — carried off the prize, I'm 
sure ; and now he'll want to treat them all. ^ . ' 

CLAUDE melnotte { opmiu^ thj> dmr) , /tCA <^'''<! ^"^^ **^ 
What ! you won't come in, my friends ! Well, well, — 

there's a trifle to make meny elsewhere. Good day to you 

all, — gocd day ! 

(Shout.) — " Hurrah ! Long live Prince Claude !" ,^ 

Enter Claude Melnotte, with a rifle in his hand. ^^<"^^' ^^ / 
melnotte. 
Give me joy, dear mother ! I've won the prize ! — never 
missed one shot ! Is it not handsome, this gun ? 

WIDOW. 

Humph I — Well, what is it worth, Claude ? 

melnotte. * 

Worth ! What is a riband worth to a soldier } Worth ! — 
every thing ! Glory is priceless ! ^<l lj ^^ o 1^.0.^ Q t^-^..*^ 

WIDOW. ^ 

Leave glory to great folks. Ah ! Claude, Claude, castles 
in the au* cost a vast deal to keep up ! How is all this to end ^ 
What good does it do thee to learn Latin, and sing songs, 
and play on the guitar, and fence, and dance, and paint 
pictures ? All very fine j but what does it bring in ? 



22 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act i. 

MELNOTTE. 

Wealth ! wealth, my mother ! — Wealth to the mind — 
wealth to the heart — high thoughts — bright dreams — the 
hope of fame — the ambition to be worthier to love Pauline. 

WIDOW. 

My poor son ! — The young lady will never think of thee. 

MELNOTTE. 

Do the stars think of us .'' Yet if the prisoner see them 
shine into his dungeon, would'st thou bid him turn away from 
their lustre } Even so from tliis low cell, poverty, I lift my 
eyes to Pauline and forget my chains. — {Goes to the picture 
and draws aside the curtain.) See, this is her image — painted 
from memory. — Oh, how the canvass wrongs her ! — {Takes up 
the brush and throtos it aside.) — I shall never be a painter ! 
I can paint no likeness but one, and that is above all art. I 
would turn soldier — France needs soldiers ! But to leave the 
air that Pauline breathes ! What is the hour .' — so late ? I 
will tell thee a secret, mother. Thou knowest that for the 
last six weeks I have sent every day the rarest flowers to 
Pauline ? — she wears them. I have seen them on her breast. 
Ah, and then the whole universe seemed filled with odours ! 
I have now grown more bold — I have poured my worship 
into poetry — I have sent the verses to Pauline — I have signed 
them with my own name. My messenger ought to be back 
by this time. I bade him wait for the answer. 

WIDOW. 

And what answer do you expect, Claude ? 

MELNOTTE. 

That which the Queen of Navarre sent to the poor trouba- 
dour : — " Let me see the Oracle that can tell nations I am 
beautiful !" She will admit me. I shall hear her speak — I 
shall meet her eyes — I shall read upon her cheek the sweet 
thoughts that translate themselves into blushes. Then — then, 
oh, then — she may forget thaX I am the peasant's sou ! 

WIDOW, 

Nay, if she will but hear thee talk, Claude ? 

MELNOTTE. 

I foresee it all. She will tell me that desert is the true rank. 
She will give me a badge — a flower — a glove ! Oh rapture ! 
I shall join the armies of the Republic — I shall rise — I shall 
win a name that beauty will not blush to hear. I shall return 
with the right to say to her — " See, how love does not level 
the proud, but raise the humble !" Oh, how my heart swells 



^^ c 



SCENE III.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 23 

within me ! — Oh, what glorious Prophets of the Future are 
Youth and Hope ! {Knock at the door.) 

WIDOW. 

Come in. 

Enter Gaspar. iOnn i^ ^^/t't O-^'. t 

MELNOTTE. 

Welcome, Gaspar, welcome. Where is the letter ? Why- 
do you turn away, man.^ where is the letter? (Gaspar ^z'ye^ 
Mm one.) This ! This is mine, the "one I intrusted to thee. 
Didst thou not leave it ? 

GASPAR. /^ 

Yes, I left it. 

MELNOTTE. /I 

My own verses returned to me. Nothing else ? 

GASPAR. 

Thou wilt be proud to hear how thy messenger was 
honoured. For thy sake, Melnotte, I have borne that which 
no Frenchman can bear without disgrace. 

MELNOTTE. 

Disgrace, Gaspar ! Disgrace ? 

GASPAR. 

I gave thy letter to the porter, who passed it from lackey 
to lackey till it reached the lady it was meant for. 

MELNOTTE. 

It reached her, then ; — you are sure of that.? It reached 
her, — well, well ! 

GASPAR. 

It reached her, and was returned to me with blows. Dost 
hear, Melnotte ? with blows ! Death ! are we slaves still, that 
we are to be thus dealt with, we peasants } 

MELNOTTE. 

With blows ? No, Gaspar, no ; not blows ! 

GASPAR. 

I could shew thee the marks if it were not so deep a shame 
to bear them. The lackey who tossed thy letter into the mire 
swore that his lady and her mother never were so insulted. 
What could thy letter contain, Claude .'' 

MELNOTTE {looking over the letter). 
Not a line that a serf might not have written to an empress. 
No, not one. 



24 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act i, 

GASPAR. 

They promise thee the same greeting they gave me, if thou 
wilt pass that way. Shall we endure this, Claude ? 
MELNOTTE {wringing Gaspar's hand). 

Forgive me, the fault was mine, I have brought this on 
thee ; I will not forget it ; thou shalt be avenged ! The 
heartless insolence ! 

GASPAR, 

Thou art moved, Melnotte ; think not of me ; I would go 
through fire and water to serve thee ; but, — a blow ! It is 
not the bruise that galls, — it is the blush, Melnotte. 

MELNOTTE. 

Say, what message ? — How insulted ? — Wherefore.'' — What 
the offence ? 

CASPAR. 

Did you not write to Pauline Deschappelles, the daughter 
of the rich merchant ? 

MELNOTTE. * 

Well .?— 

GASPAR. 

And are you not a peasant — a gardener's son } — that was 
the offence. Sleep on it, Melnotte. Blows to a French 
citizen, blows ! [^Exit. U/Ti. 

WIDOW. 

Now you are cured, Claude ! 

MELNOTTE {tearing the letter). 

So do I scatter her image to the winds — I will stop her in 
the open streets — I will insult her — I will beat her menial 

ruffians — I will ( Turns suddenly to Widow.) Mother, 

am I humpbacked — deformed — hideous ? 

WIDOW. 

You! 

MELNOTTE. 

A coward — a thief — a liar .? 

WIDOW. 

You! 

MELNOTTE. 

Or a dull fool — a vain, drivelling, brainless idiot ? 

WIDOW. 

No, no. 

MELNOTTE. 

What am I then — worse than all these ? Why, I am a 
peasant ! What has a peasant to do with love ? Vain Re- 



SCENE III.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. So 

volutions, why lavish your cruelty on the great ? Oh that 
we — we, the hewers of wood and drawers of water, had been 
swept away, so that the proud might learn what the world 
would be without us ! — ■/ // / {Knock at the door.) 

Enter S cfyo i n ty rom the Inn, Ar-^^?'^ c^- *^C^<^ 

SEItVANTi i>2. ^ <.^^e^^ <r^^ 
A letter for Citizen Melnotte. 

MELNOTTE, 

A letter ! from her perhaps — who sent thee ? 

Why, Monsieur — I mean Citizen — Beauseant, who stops 
to dine at the Golden Lion, on his way to his chateau. 

MELNOTTE. 

Beauseant ! — {Reads.) 

" Young man, I know thy secret — thou lovest above thy \ 
station : if thou hast wit, coiu'age, and discretion, I can / y 
secure to thee the realisation of thy most sanguine hopes ; / ^^ 
and the sole condition I ask in return is, that thou shalt be 
steadfast to tliine own ends. I shall demand from thee a \ \^ 
solemn oath to marry her whom thou lovest ; to bear her to 
thine home on thy wedding night. I am serious — if thou 
would' St learn more, lose not a moment, but follow the bearer 
of this letter to thy friend and patron, — Charles Beauseant." 

MELNOTTE. 

Can I believe my eyes ? Are our own passions the sor- 
cerers that raise uj) for us spirits of good or evil ? I will go 
instantly ^z-<^ >^^ v-t^^i^^ ^^ 

WIDOW. i5-tnr^^^ ^ 

What is this, Claude ? ^ie^'^cy /^y ^i^ ^j^^/t .v. ,;,^ 

MELNOTTE. 

" Marry her whom thou lovest" — " bear "her to thine own 
home." — O, revenge and love ; which of you is the stronger ? 
— {Gazing on the picture) Sweet face, thou smilest on me 
fi-om the canvass : weak fool that I am, do I then love her 
still ? No, it is the vision of my own romance that I have 
worshipped : it is the reality to which I bring scorn for 
scorn. Adieu, mother ; I will return anon. My brain reels 
— the earth swims before me. — {Looks again at the letter.) No, 
it is not a mockery j I do not di-eam I [Exit. ^t> r> ^ 

END OF ACT I, 



^^ L c Cl^ / y/^ 



i^/. 



26 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act n. 



ACT IL 



SCENE L^^,^^,^^^,^/ /^ 



TJie Gardens of M. Deschappelles House at Lyons — the 
House seen at the back of the stage. /—, 

Enter Beauseant and Glavis. /^ / /^ 

BEAUSEANT. X. 

Well, what think you of my plot ? Has it not succeeded 
to a miracle ? The instant that I introduced His Highness 
the Prince of Como to the pompous mother and the scornful 
daughter, it was all over with him : he came — he saw — he 
conquered : and, though it is not many days since he arrived, 
they have already promised him the hand of Pauline. 

GLAVIS. 

It is lucky, though, that you told them His Highness travelled 
incognito, for fear the Directory (who are not very fond of 
princes) should lay him by the heels ; for he has a wonderful 
wish to keep up his rank, and scatters our gold about with 
as much coolness as if he were watering his own flower-pots. 

BEAUSEANT 

True, he is damnably extravagant ; I think the sly dog 
does it out of malice. However, it must be owned that he 
reflects credit on his loyal subjects, and makes a very pretty 
figure in his fine clothes, with my diamond snufi'-box — 

GLAVIS. 

And my diamond ring I But do you think he will be firm 
to the last ? I fancy I see symptoms of relenting : he will 
never keep up his rank, if he once let out his conscience. 

BEAUSEANT. 

His oath binds him ; he cannot retract without being for- 
sworn, and those low fellows are always superstitious ! But, 
as it is, I tremble lest he be discovered : that bluff" Colonel 
Damas (Madame Deschappelles' cousin) evidently suspects 
him : we must make haste and conclude the farce : I have 
thought of a plan to end it this very day. 

GLAVIS. 

This very day : Poor Pauline : her dream will be soon over. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Yes, this day they shall be married ; this evening, according 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 27 

to his oath, he shall carry his bride to the Golden Lion, and 
then pomp, equipage, retinue, and title, all shall vanish at 
once ; and her Highness the Princess shall find that she has 
refused the son of a Marquis, to marry the son of a Gardener. ^4/^^/ 
— Oh, Pauline ! once loved, now hated, yet still not relin- '^ /<*«^ 
quished, thou shalt drain the cup to the dregs, — thou slialt , 
know what it is to be humbled ! '^r-cj cv^ /i^ei Cj /r^<^y ^*^rur^ 

Enter from the House, Melnotte «5 the Prince of Coma, 
leading in Pauxine ; Madame TDeschappelles, fanning 
herself; and Colonex Damas. Z^ 'z £: 
(Beauseant a7ul Glavis bow respectfully. Pauline and 
Melnotte walk apart.) /'y^^^rr^^/^ A^^ 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

Good morning, gentlemen ; really I am so fatigued with 
laughter ; the dear Prince is so entertaining. What wit he 
has ! Any one may see that he has spent his whole life in 
courts. 

DAMAS. /\ 
And what the deuce do you know about courts, cousin 
Deschappelles 1 You women regard men just as you buy 
books — you never care about what is in them, but how they 
are bound and lettered. -^'^^Pfitbj T f1"n't tbink ynu Ti'mdrl 
. . .■■■1 ^-r^\r nt yr.nv T^i]^]^ j f jt had r | Pit 1 titlp t n it 

MADAME DESCHAP. A <^ 

How coarse you are, cousin Damas ! — quite the manners 
of a baiTack — you don't deserve to be one of our family ; 
really we must drop your acquaintance when Pauline mar- 
ries. I cannot patronise any relations that would discredit 
my futm*e son-in-law, the Prince of Como. 

MELNOTTE {advancing) . CZ 
These are beautifid gardens, Madame, (Beauseant and 
Glavis retire) — who planned them ? 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

A gardener named Melnotte, your Highness — an honest 
man who knew his station. I can't say as much for his son 
— a presuming fellow, who — ha ! ha ! actually wrote verses 
— such doggerel ! — to my daughter. ' ^y,:_ 

PAULINE. ^ '\ ' <-^^ <^ 'f ^^^?<r 

Yes, how^ you would have laughed at them, Prince ! — 
you who write such beautiful verses ! 

MELNOTTE. 

This Melnotte must be a monstrous impudent person ! 



i^U 



28 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act ir. 

DAMAS. A 

Is he good-looking ? 

MADAME DESCHAP, A ^ 

I never notice such canaille — an ugly, mean-looking 
clown, if I remember right. 

DAMAS. 

Yet I heard your porter say he was wonderfully like his 
Highness. 

MELNOTTE {taking smtff), i"z^^r^^ c^'-y /'/f^cr-z^h C 
You are complimentary. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

For shame, cousin Damas ! — like the Prince, indeed ! 

PAULINE. ^ y 

Like you ! Ah, mother, like our beautiful Prince ! I'll 
never speak to you again, cousin Damas. ,^^ a.n> i<yL 

MELNOTTE {aside). CL 
Humph I — rank is a gieat beautifier ! I never passed for 
an Apollo while I was a peasant ; if I am so handsome as a 
prince, what should I be as an emperor ? — {Aloud.) Monsieur 
Beauseant, will you honour me ? {offers sni/ff. ) 

BEAUSEANT. /. 

No, your Highness ; I have no small vices. 

MELNOTTE. Z- C 

Nay, if it were a vice you'd be siu:e to have it, Monsieur 

Beauseant. 

n 
MADAME DESCHAP. A 

Ha ! ha ! — how very severe ! — what wit ! 

BEAUSEANT {in a rage and aside.) 
Curse his impertinence ! 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

What a superb snuiF-box ! 

PAULINE, /l ^ 

And what a beautiful ring ! 

MELNOTTE. C 

You like the box — a trifle — interesting perhaps from 
associations — a present from Louis XIV. to my great-great- 
grandmother. Honour me by accepting it- /y^^y' ^ ^^ v/^/^ 

BEAUSEANT {plucMng him by the sleeve.) /^ (^ ^' 

How I — what the devil ! My box — are you mad ? It is 
worth five hundred louis. 



d^j 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 29 

MELNOTTE (unheeding him, and turning to Pauline'). 
And you like this ring ? Ah, it has, indeed, a lustre since 
your eyes have shone on it {placing it on her finger). Hence- 
forth hold me, sweet enchantress, the Slave of the Ring. 

GLAVis {pulling him). 
Stay, stay — what are you alaout? My maiden aunt's 
legacy — a diamond of the first water. You shall be hanged 
for swindling. Sir. ^'^ } rj-^ ■ '< - y X /- <^ a-L-t<-. '^- '^ ? x-.-p.u_-. 

MELNOTTE {pretending not to hear). 
It is curious, this ring ; it is the one with which my grand- 
father, the Doge of Venice, married the Adi'iatic ! 

(Madame and Pauline examine the ring.) ^^'^^ 

MELNOTTE {to Beauseant and Glavis). 
Fie, gentlemen, princes must be generous t — ( Turns to 
Damas, who ivatches them closely.) These kind friends have 
my interest so much at heart, that they are as careful of my 
property as if it were their own ! 

BEAUSEANT AND GLAVIS {confusedly). Z-^ 

Ha ! ha ! — very good joke that ! 

{Appear to remonstrate loith Melnotte in dumh show.) 

DAMAS. 

What's all that whispering ? I am sure there is some 
juggle here : hang me, if I think he is an Italian after all. 
Gad ! I'll try him. Servitore umillissimo, Eccellenza,* C^<^%^-c^<^ 

MELNOTTE. 

Hum — what does he mean, I wonder ? 

DAMAS. 

Godo di vedervi in buona salute. f 

MELNOTTE. 

Hem — hem ! 

DAMAS. 

Fa bel tempo — che si dice di nuovo ?J 

MELNOTTE. 

Well, Sir, what's all that gibberish ? 

DAMAS. /ti^/u^i^^ 

Oh, oh! — only Italian, your Highness ! — The Prince of 
Como does not understand his own language ! 

MELNOTTE. 

Not as you pronounce it, — who the deuce could ? 

* Your Excellency 's most humble servant. 
t I am glad to see you in good health. 
X Fine weather. What news is there? 



Iic%i^ 



THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act ii. 



"$'J^ii: 



MADAME DESCHAP. 

Ha ! ha ! cousin Damas, never pretend to what you don't 
know. / ./t'ttA^ , ' *^^ 

f ^ t*^ PAULINE. 

jU^^Ual ha! cousin Damas; i/ou speak Italian, indeed! 
{Makes a mocking gesture at him^ 

BEAUSEANT {to GlAVIS). 

Clever dog ! — how ready ! 

GLAVIS. l^ 

Ready, yes ; with my diamond ring ! — Damn his readiness ! 
DAMAS. {\i^c.j i\o-*^^n.^ C 

Laugh at me ! — laugh at a Colonel in the French army ! 
— the fellow's an impostor; I know he is. I'll see if he 
understands fighting as well as he does Italian. — {Goes up 
to him, and aside.) Sir, you are a jackanapes ! — Can you 
construe that ? /y(^ , /i r/ ( '-/«^< ^ < <" ^] c uj.^ U 4 i <n^t 

•' MELNOTTE. 

No, Sir ; I never constiaie affronts in the presence of ladies ; 
by and by I shall be happy to take a lesson — or give one. 

DAMAS. , 

I'll find the occasion, never fear ! ^/ 0~^j ^ 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

Where are you going, cousin .'' 

DAMAS. 

To correct my Italian. {Exit. L- 'l/^ 

BEAUSEANT {to GlAVIS). 

Let us after, and pacify him ; he evidently suspects some- 
thing. 

GLAVIS. 

Yes ! — but my diamond ring ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

And my box ! — We are over-taxed, fellow-subjects ! — we 
must stop the supplies, and dethrone the Prince. 

GLAVIS. 

Prince ! — he ought to be heir-apparent to King Stork ! 

{Exeunt Beauseant and Glavis. 

MADAME DESCHAP. A C 

Dare I ask your Highness to forgive my cousin's insuffer- 
able vulgarity ? 

PAULINE. /- 

Oh, yes ! — ^you will forgive his manner for the sake of his 
heart. 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 81 

MELNOTTE. 

And the sake of his cousin. — Ah, Madame, there is one 
comfort in rank, — we are so sure of our position that we are 
not easily affronted. Besides, M. Damas has bought the right 
of indulgence from his friends, by never shewing it to his 
enemies. 

PAULINE. 

Ah ! he is indeed, as brave in action as he is rude in speech. 
He rose from the ranks to his present grade, — and in two 
years ! 

MELNOTTE. 

In two years ! — two years, did you say ? 

MADAME DESCHAP {aside). 9l*^J <:</i ,i^^r^ C \<rJJ^- 

I don't like leaving girls alone with their I'overs ; but, with 
a prince, it would be so ill-bred to be prudish. [Exit. ^- 2. j^ 

MELNOTTE. 

You can be proud of your connexion with one who owes 
his position to merit, — not birth. 

PAULINE. 

Why, yes ; but still — • 

MELNOTTE. 

Still what, Pauline ! 

PAULINE. 

There is something glorious in the Heritage of Command. 
A man who has ancestors is like a Representative of the Past. 

MELNOTTE. 

True ; but, like other representatives, nine times out of ten 
he is a silent member. Ah, Pauline ! not to the Past, but to 
the Future, looks true nobility, and finds its blazon in posterity. 

PAULINE. 

You say this to please me, who have no ancestors ; but 
you, Prince, must be proud of so illustrious a race ! 

MELNOTTE. 

No, no ! I would not, were I fifty times a prince, be a pen- 
sioner on the Dead ! I honour birth and ancestry when they 
are regarded as the incentives to exertion, not the title-deeds 
to sloth ! I honour the laurels that overshadow the graves of 
our fathers ; — it is oui" fathers I emulate, when I desire that 
beneath the evergreen I myself have planted my own ashes 
may repose ! Dearest ! could' st thou but see with my eyes ! 

PAULINE. 

I cannot forego pride when I look on thee, and think that 



82 THE LADY OF LYONS; [act ii 

thou lovest me. Sweet Prince, tell me again of thy palace 
by the Lake of Como ; it is so pleasant to hear of thy splen- 
dours since thou didst swear to me that they would be deso- 
late without Pauline ; and when thou describest them, it is 
with a mocking lip and a noble scorn, as if custom had made 
thee disdain greatness. 

MELNOTTE. 

Nay, dearest, nay, if thou would' st have me paint 
The home to which, could Love fulfil its prayers, 
This hand would lead thee, listen !* — A deep vale 
Shut out by Alpine hills from the rude world ; 
Near a clear lake, margin'd by fruits of gold 
And whispering myrtles ; glassing softest skies 
As cloudless, save with rare and roseate shadows, 
As I would have thy fate ' 

PAULINE. 

My own dear love ! 

MELNOTTE. 

A palace lifting to eternal summer 

Its marble walls, from out a glossy bower 

Of coolest foliage musical with birds. 

Whose songs should syllable thy name ! At noon 

We'd sit beneath the arching vines, and wonder 

Why Earth could be unhappy, while the Heavens 

Still left us youth and love ! We'd have no friends 

That were not lovers ; no ambition, save 

To excel them all in love ; we'd read no books 

That were not tales of love — that we might smile 

To think how poorly eloquence of words 

Translates the poetry of hearts like ours ! 

And when night came, amidst the breathless Heavens 

We'd guess what star should be our home when love 

Becomes immortal ; while the peifumed light 

Stole through the mists of alabaster lamps, 

And every air was heavy with the sighs 

Of orange-groves and music from sweet lutes, 

Ai.d murmurs of low fountains that gush forth 

I' the midst of roses ! — Dost thou like the picture ? 

* The reader will observe that Melnotte evades the request of Pauline. He 
proceeds to describe a home, -which he does not say he possesses, but to which 
he would lead her, " could Love fulfilits prai/ers." This caution is intended as 
a reply to a sagacious critic who censures the description, because it is not aa 
exact and prosaic inventory of the characteristics of the Lake of Como ! — When 
Melnotte, for instance, talks of birds " that syllable the name of Pauline," (by 
the way a literal translation from an Italian poet,) he is not thinking of ornitho- 
logy, but probably of the Arabian Nights. He is venting the extravagant, but 
natural, entlmsiasm of the Poet and the Lover. 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. S3 

PAULINE. 

Oh ! as the bee upon the flower, I hang 
Upon the honey of thy eloquent tongue ! 
Am I not blest? And if I love too wildly, 
Who would not love thee like Pauline ? 
MELNOTTE (bitterly). 

Oh, false one ! 
It is the prince thou lovest, not the man : 
If in the stead of luxmy, pomp, and power, 
I had painted poverty, and toil, and care. 
Thou hadst found no honey on my tongue ; — Pauline, 
That is not love ! c'tt^J-^~> '^i- /V 

PAULINE. 

Thou wiong'st me, cruel Prince ! 
At first, in tnith, I might not have been won, 
Save through the weakness of a flatter'd pride ; 
But noiv, — Oh ! trust me, — could'st thou fall from power 
And sink — 

MELNOTTE. 

As low as that poor gardener's son 
Who dared to lift his eyes to thee ? — 

PAULINE. 

Even then, 
Methinks thou would'st be only made more dear 
By the sweet thought that I could prove how deep 
Is woman's love ! We are like the insects, caught 
By the poor glittering of a garish flame ; 
But, oh, the wings once scorch'd, the brightest star 
Lures us no more ; and by the fatal light 
We cling till death ! 

^ MELNOTTE, 

Angel! €t<<-<^'i^^'^'^y Ae ■,. 

(Aside.) O conscience ! conscience ! 
It must not be ; — ^her love Imth grown a torture 
Worse than her hate. I will at once to Beauseant, 

And ha ! he comes- tr Sweet love, one moment leave me, 

I have business with these gentlemen — I — I ^ j£<h^^ /jea^^^^e^A 
Will forthwith join you. ^i . . f -^^ 

PAULINE. ^''/^o^, 

Do not tarry long ! {Exit, i^ (^^ 

MELNOTTE. C 

Release me from my oath, — I will not marry her ! . 



84 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act it. 

BEAUSEANT. A 

Then thou art peijured. 

MELNOTTE. 

No, I was not in my senses when I swore to thee to marry 
her ! I was blind to all but her scorn ! — deaf to all but my 
passion and my rage ! Give me back my poverty and my 
honour ! 

BEAUSEANT. C 

It is too late, — you must marry her ! and this day. I have 
a story abeady coined, and sure to pass current. This 
Damas suspects thee, — he will set the police to work; — 
thou wilt be detected — Pauline will despise and execrate 
thee. Thou wilt be sent to the common gaol as a swindler. 

MELNOTTE. <^.? r^J^ ^^ /< A 

Fiend ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

And in the heat of the girl's resentment (you know of what 
resentment is capable) and the parents' shame, she will be 
induced to marry the first that offers — even perhaps your 
humble servant. 

MELNOTTE. 

You ! No ; that were worse — for thou hast no mercy ! I 
will marry her — I will keep my oath. Quick, then, with 
the damnable invention thou art hatching ; — quick, if thou 
would' st not have me strangle thee or myself. 

GLAVIS. 

What a tiger! Too fierce for a prince; — ne ought to 
have been the Grand Turk. 

BEAUSEANT. 

Enough — I will despatch ; be prepared. 

[Exeunt Beauseant and Glavis./ ' JZ. 

_X Enter Damas with two swords. 'icriAri.i^ u^a^a a/ ,?^^ 

damas. 
Now, then. Sir, the ladies are no longer your excuse. I 
have brought you a couple of dictionaries ; let us see if your 
Highness can find out the Latin for hilho. 

MELNOTTE. 

Away, Sir ! — I am in no humour for jesting. 

DAMAS. 

I see you understand something of the grammar ; you 
decline the noun substantive " small sword" with great ease j 
but that won't do — you must take a lesson in parsing. 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 35 

MELNOTTE. C-^ eyrJ yl t *^< '- r-^ 

Fool! "^ 

DA MAS. 

Sir, — as sons take after their mother, so the man -who 
calls me a fool insults the lady who bore me ; there's no 
escape for you — fight you shall, or 

MELNOTTE. Zv C 

Oh, enough I enough ! — take your ground. 

{They Jif/ht; Damas is disarmed. Melnotte takes 

up the sword and returns it to Damas respectful! i/.) 

A just punishment to the brave soldier who robs the State 

of its best property — the sole right to his valour and his 

life. 

damas. 
Sir, you fence exceedingly well ; you must be a man of 
honour — I don't care a jot whether you are a prince ; but a 
man who has carte and tierce at his fingers' ends must be a 
gentleman. 

MELNOTTE (aside.) 
Gentleman ! Ay, I was a gentleman before I turned 
conspirator ; for honest men are the gentlemen of Nature ! 
Colonel, they tell me you rose from the ranks. 

DAMAS. 



I did. 

And in two years ? 



MELNOTTE. 



DAMAS. 

It is true ; that's no wonder in our array at present. Why 
the oldest general in the service is scarcely thirty, and we 
have some of two-and-twenty. 

MELNOTTE. 

Two-and-twenty ? 

DAMAS. 

Yes ; in the French army, now-a-days, promotion is not a 
matter of purchase. We are all heroes, because we may be 
all generals. We have no fear of the cypress, because we 
may all hope for the laurel. 

MELNOTTE. 

A general at two-and-twenty ! {turning away) — Sir, I may 
ask you a favour one of these days. 

DAMAS. 

Sir, I shall be proud to grant it. It is astonishing how much 
I like a man after I've fought with him. — {Hides the sioords.) /^ 

€ 2 



36 THE LADY OF LYONS; [act ii. 



Ejiter Madame Deschappelles and Beauseant. c^ 2. cl. 

MADAME DESCHAP. ^ ^ 

Oh, Prince ! — Prince ! — What do I hear? You must fly, 
you must quit us ! 

melnotte. A^ 

I!— 

beauseant. ^ 

Yes, Prince ; read this letter, just received fi'om my friend 
at Paris, one of the Directory ; they suspect you of designs 
against the Republic ; they are very suspicious of princes, 
and your family take part with the Austrians. Knowing that 
I introduced your Highness at Lyons, my friend writes to me 
to say that you must quit the town immediately, or you Avill 
be arrested, — thrown into prison, — perhaps guillotined ! 
Fly ! — I will order horses to your carriage instantly. Fly to 
Marseilles ; there you can take ship to Leghorn. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

And what's to become of Pauline ? Am I not to be mother 
to a princess, after all ? 

Enter Pauline and M. Deschappelles. c- 2 ^ 

PAULINE {throwing herself into Melnotte's arms)* 
You must leave us ! — Leave Pauline ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

Not a moment is to be wasted. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

I will go to the magistrates and inquire 

BEAUSEANT. 

Then he is lost ; the magistrates, hearing he is suspected, 
will order his arrest. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

And I shall not be a Princess Dowager ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

Why not ? There is only one thing to be done : — send for 
the priest — let the marriage take place at once, and the Prince 
carry home a bride ! 

MELNOTTE. 

Impossible ! — {Aside.) Villain ! 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

What, lose my child .'' 

BEAUSEANT. 
And gain a princess ! 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 37 

* MADAME DESCHAP. 

Oh, Monsieur Beauseant, you are so very kind, it must 
be so, — we ought not to be selfish, my daughter's happiness 
at stake. She will go away, too, in a carriage and six I 

PAULINE. 

Thou art here still, — I cannot part from thee, — ^my heart 
will break, 

MELNOTTE. 

But thou wilt not consent to this hasty union ? — thou wilt 
not wed an outcast — a fugitive ? 

PAULINE. 

Ah ! If thou art in danger, who should share it but 
Pauline ? 

MELNOTTE {aside). 
Distraction ! — If the earth could swallow me ! 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

Gently ! gently ! The settlements — the contracts — my 
daughter's dowry ! 

MELNOTTE. 

The dowry ! — I am not base enough for that ; no, not one 
farthing ! 

BEAUSEANT {to MADAME). 

Noble fellow ! — Really your good husband is too mercan- 
tile in these matters. Monsieur Deschappelles, you hear his 
Highness : we can an'ange the settlements by proxy j 'tis the 
way with people of quality. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

But 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

Hold your tongue ! — Don't expose yourself! 

BEAUSEANT. 

I will bring the priest in a trice. Go in all of you and 
prepare ; the carriage shall be at the door before the cere- 
mony is over. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

Be sure there are six horses, Beauseant ! You are very 
good to have forgiven us for refusing you ; but you see — a 
prince ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

And such a prince ! Madame, I cannot blush at the success 
of so illustrious a rival. — {Aside.) Now will I follow them to /^^^^ 
the village, enjoy my triumph, and to-morrow, in the hour ^ 2 



S3 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act ii. 

of thy shame and grief, I think, proud girl, thou wilt prefer 
even these arms to those of the gardener's son. 

[Exit. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

Come, Monsieiu: Deschappelles, give your arm to her 
Highness that is to be. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

I don't like doing business in such a hurry ; 'tis not the 
■way with the house of Deschappelles and Co. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

There, now, you fancy you are in the counting-house, 
don't you ? {Pushes him to Pauline.) ^<r^<, il ft eC /xcv^^y L- 1 

MELNOTTE. 

Stay, stay, Pauline — one word. Have you no scruple, no 
fear ? Speak — it is not yet too late. 

PAULINE. 

When I loved thee, thy fate became mine. Triumph or 
danger — joy or sorrow — I am by thy side. 

DAMAS. 

Well, well, Prince, thou art a lucky man to be so loved. 
She is a good little girl in spite of her foibles — make her as 
happy as if she were not to be a princess {slapping him on the 
shoulder). Come, Sir, I wish you joy — ^young— tender — 
lovely ; — zounds, I envy you ! 

MELNOTTE {who has stood apart in gloomy abstraction). 
Do you ?* 



• On the stage the following lines are added : — 

" Do you? Wise judges are we of each other. 
' Woo, wed, and bear her home !' So runs the bomi 
To which I sold myself — and then — what then ? 
Away! — I will not look beyond the Hour. 
Like children in the dark, I dare not face 
The shadesjhat gather round me in the distancCt 
^Svi_envy me — I thank you— you may read— - — 
My joy upon my brow — I thank you. Sir! 
If hearts had audible language, you would hear 
What mine would answer when you talk of envijf 




Uc.^-^ ^-/^ 



vV ' ^ END OF ACT 



II. 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 89 

ACT III. 



S 



GENE I. S'//-/ ^^, '^ ^-Ofxn^ 



The Exterior of the Golden Lion — time, twilight. The moon 
rises during the Scene. 

Enter Landlord and his Daughter ^rowi the Inn. / 

LANDLORD. 

Ha — ha — ^ha ! Well, I never shall get over it. Our Claude 
is a prince with a vengeance now. His carriage breaks down 
at my inn — ha — ha ! 

JANET. 

And what airs the young lady gives herself! " Is this the 
best room you have, young woman ?" with such a toss of the 
head ! 

LANDLORD. 

Well, get in, Janet ; get in and see to the supper ; the ser- 
vants must sup before they go back. 

{^Exeunt. ^ 
Enter Beauseant and Glavis. /( y 

BEAUSEANT. 

You see our Princess is lodged at last — one stage more, 
and she'll be at her journey's end — the beautiful palace at 
the foot of the Alps ! — ha — ha ! 

glavis. 

Faith, I pity the poor Pauline — especially if she's going to 
sup at the Golden Lion {Makes a wry face). I shall never 
forget that cvnsed ragout. 

Enter Melnotte from the Inn. ^ 

BEAUSEANT. 

Your servant, my Prince ; you reigned most worthily. I 
condole with you on your abdication. I am afraid that your 
Highness's retinue are not very faithful servants. I think 
they will quit you in the moment of your fall — 'tis the fate 
of greatness. But you are welcome to your fine clothes — 
also the diamond snufF-box, which Louis XIV. gave to your 
great- gi'eat-grandmother. 

GLAVIS. 

And the ring, with which your gi*andfather the Doge of 
Venice married the Adriatic. 



40 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act hi. 

MELNOTTE. ^ 

I have kept my oath, gentlemen, say — have I kept my oath ? 

BEAUSEANT. C 

Most religiously. 

MELNOTTE, 

Then you have clone with me and mine — away with you ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

How, knave ? 

MELNOTTE. 

Look you, our bond is over. Proud conquerors that we 
are, we have won the victory over a simple girl — compro- 
mised her honour — embittered her life — blasted, in theu' very 
blossoms, all the flowers of her youth. This is your triumph, 
— it is my shame ! {Turns to Beauseant.) Enjoy thy tri- 
umph, but not m my sight. I ivas her betrayer — I am her 
protector ! Cross but her path — one word of scorn, one look 
of insult — nay, but one quiver of that mocking lip, and I 
will teach thee that bitter word thou hast graven eternally in 
this heart — Repentance ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

His Highness is most grandiloquent. 

MELNOTTE. 

Highness me no more. Beware ! Remorse has made me 
a new being. Away with you ! There is danger in me. Away ! 

GLAVis {aside). \ 
He's an awkward fellow to deal with : come away, Beauseant. 

BEAUSEANT. 

I know the respect due to rank. Adieu, my Prince. Any 
commands at Lyons ? Yet hold — 1 promised you 200 louis 
on your wedding-day ; here they are. 

MELNOTTE {dashing the purse to the ground). 
I gavej^ourevenge, I did not sell it. Take up your silver, 
Judas ; take it>— Ay, it is fit you should learn to stoop. 

BEAUSEANT. 

You will beg my pardon for this some day. {Aside to 
Glavis.) Come to my chateau — I shall return hither to- 
morrow to learn how Pauline likes her new dignity. 

MELNOTTE. L. 

Are you not gone yet } 

BEAUSEANT. 

Your Highness's most obedient, most faithful — 



SCENE r.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 41 

GLAVIS. 

And most humble servants. Ha ! ha ! 

[Exeunt Beauseant and Glavis. 

MELNOTTE. 

Thank Heaven, I had no weapon, or I should have slain 
them. Wretch ! what can I say ? Where tm^n ? On all sides 
mockery — the very boors within — {Laughter from the inn), — 
'Sdeath, if even in this short absence the exposure should have 
chanced. I will call her. We will go hence. I have already 
sent one I can trust to my mother's house. There at least 
none can insult her agony — gloat upon her shame ! There 
alone must she learn what a villain she has sworn to love. . 
{As he turns to the door, enter Pauline ^rom the inn.) t!—^ 

PAULINE. 

Ah ! my Lord, what a place ! I never saw such rude 
people. Th b}' st ' aiu a r nihvvmlrsu: I think the very sight of 
a prince, though he travels incognito, turns their honest 
heads. What a pity the carriage should break down in such 
a spot ! You are not well — the drops stand on your brow — 
your hand is feverish. 

MELNOTTE. 

Nay, it is but a passing spasm ; the air 

PAULINE. 

Is not the soft air of your native south — 
How pale he is ! — indeed thou art not well. 
Where are our people ? I will call them. 

MELNOTTE. 

Hold! 
I — I am well. 

PAULINE. 

Thou art ! — Ah ! now I know it. 
Thou fanciest, my kind Lord — I know thou dost — 
Thou fanciest these rude walls, these rustic gossips, 
Brick'd floors, sour wine, coarse viands, vex Pauline ; 
And so they might, but thou art by my side, 
And I forget all else. y^.^,/ ^,7 

Enter Landlord, 4kr Servants peeping and 
laughing over his shoulder, tLi 

LANDLORD. 

My Lord — your Highness — 
Will your most noble Excellency choose — , 

MELNOTTE. A^A ^ 7^^ 

Begone, Sir! \Exit Landlord, Im t ghinp^ ^ 



42 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act hi 

PAULINE. 

How could they have leam'd thy rank ? 
One's servants are so vain ! — nay, let it not 
Chafe thee, sweet Prince ! — a few short days, and we . 

Shall see thy palace by its lake of silver, /u J Li « '- ^ 

And— nay, nay, Spendthrift, is thy wealth of smiles 
Already drained, or dost thou play the miser ? 

MELNOTTE. 

Thine eyes would call up smiles in deserts, fair one ; 
Let us escape these inistics. Close at hand 
There is a cot, where I have bid prepare 
Our evening lodgement — a rude, homely roof, 
But honest, where our welcome will not be 
Made torture by the vulgar eyes and tongues 
That are as death to Love ! A heavenly night ! 
The wooing air and the soft moon invite us. 
Wilt walk ? I pray thee, now, — I know the path, 
Ay, every inch of it ! 

PAULINE, 

What, thou I methought 
Thou wert a stranger in these parts ? Ah ! truant, 
Some village beauty lured thee ; — thou art no\r 
Grown constant? 

MELNOTTE. 

Trust me. 

PAULINE. 

Princes are so changeful '. 

MELNOTTE. 

Come, dearest, come. 

PAULINE, 

Shall I not call our people 
To light us ? 

MELNOTTE. 

Heaven will lend its stars for torches \ 
It is not far. 

PAULINE. 

The night breeze chills me. 

MELNOTTE, 

Nay, 
Let me thus mantle thee ; — it is not cold. 

PAULINE. 

Never beneath thy smile ! 

MELNOTTE (aside). 

Oh, Heaven ! forgive me ! {^Exeunt. 




SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 43 

SCENE 11. /jq UC, kfj 

Melnotte's Cottage — Widow hustling about — A table 
spread fur supper. 

WIDOW. 

So, I thiuk that looks very neat. He sent me a line, so 
blotted that I can scarcely read it, to say he would be here 
almost immediately. She must have loved him well, indeed, 
to have forgotten his birth ; for though he was introduced to 
her in disgxiise, he is too honourable not to have revealed to 
her the artifice which her love only could forgive. Well, I 
do not wonder at it ; for though my son is not a prince, he 
ought to be one, and that's almost as good. {Knock at the 
door.) Ah! here they are. -^/^^ /fA^^^ y fY-oiri^ 
Enter Melnotte and Fauline. 

WIDOW. 

Oh, my boy — the pride of my heai't ! — welcome, welcome ! 
I beg pardon, Ma'am, but I do love him so ! /a/-A. . i-i^ /va- c^c 

PAULINE. 

Good woman, I really — why. Prince, what is this ? — does 
the old lady know you ? Oh, I guess, you have done her 
some service. Another proof of your kind heart, is it not ? 

melnotte. Z- C 
Of my kind heart, ay I 

PAULINE. C 

So you know the Prince ? 

WIDOW. A ^ 
Know him. Madam ? — Ah, I begin to fear it is you who 
know him not ! 

PAULINE. 

Do you think she is mad? Can we stay here, my Lord? 
I think there's something very wild about her. : ^'<«^ ^, ^^. /^ /^ 

MELNOTTE. L-d. 

Madam, I — no I cannot tell her, my Irnr"" Irnrflr t^rrthrr' 
what a coward is a man who has lost his honour ! Speak to 
her — speak to her {to his mother) — tell her that — Oh, 
Heaven, that I were dead! ^^^ irJoi< ] ^^ K 

PAULINE. 

How confused he looks ! — this strange place — this woman — 
what can it mean? — I half suspect — Who are you, Madam? 
—who are you ? can't you speak? are you struck dumb? 



U THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act hi. 

WIDOW. 

Claude, you have not deceived her ? — Ah, shame upon you ! 
I thought that, before you went to the altar, she was to have 
known all. 

PAULINE. 

All ! what ? — My blood freezes in my veins ! 

WIDOW. 

Poor lady ! — dare I tell her, Claude ? (Melnotte makes 
a sign of assent.) Know you not then. Madam, that this 
young man is of poor tlioiigL honest parents ? Know you 
not that you are wedded to my son, Claude Melnotte ? 

PAULINE. ^ ''c I'^J J^^ -^ A ' - ''( 

Your son ! hold — hold ! do not speak to me. — {Approaches 
Melnotte, and lays her hand on his arm.^ Is this a jest ? is 
it? I know it is, only speak — one word — one look — one 
smile. I cannot believe — I who loved thee so — I cannot 
believe that thou art such a — No, I will not wrong thee by 
a harsh word — Speak ! 

MELNOTTE. i^i t^'^^^'^'> ^ 

Leave us — have pity on her, on me : leave us, 

WIDOW. 

Oh, Claude, that I should live to see thee bowed by 
shame ! — tliee of whom I was so proud ! 

\^Exit, by the staircase. 
PAULINE. /\i C 
Her son — her son ! 

MELNOTTE. C. 

Now, lady, hear me. 

PAULINE. 

Hear thee ! 
Ay, speak — her son ' have fiends a parent ? speak, 
That thou may'st silence curses — speak ! 

MELNOTTE. 

No, curse me : 
Thy curse would blast me less than thy forgiveness. 

PAULINE {laughing wildlj/). 
" This is thy palace, where the perftimed light 
" Steals through the mist of alabaster lamps, 
" And every air is heavy with the sighs 
" Of oiange-groves, and music from sweet lutes, 
" And murmurs of low fountains, that gush forth 
" r the midst of roses !" Dost thou like the picture ? 
This is my bridal home, and thou my bridegroom ! 



SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 46 

fool — O dupe — O wretch ! — I see it all — • 
The bye-word and the jeer of every tongue 
In Lyons. Hast thou in thy heart one touch 
Of human kindness ? if thou hast, why, kill me, 

And save thy wife from madness. No, it cannot — <^^ ^^--'^ « -> ^^ 
It cannot be : this is some homd dream : 

1 shall wake soon. — {Touching Mm.) Art flesh? art man } or but 
The shadows seen in sleep } — It is too real. 

What have I done to thee ? how sinn'd against thee, 

That thou should'st crush me thus .? /- A' '^^^'^^ e^.^^-^ 

MELNOTTE. 

Pauline, by pride — 
Angels have fallen ere thy time : by pride — 
That sole alloy of thy most lovely mould — 
The evil spirit of a bitter love. 
And a revengeful heart, had power upon thee. 
From my first years my soul was fill'd with thee : 
I saw thee midst the flow'rs the lowly boy 
Tended, unmark'd by thee — a spirit of bloom, 
And joy, and fi'eshness, as if Spring itself 
Were made a living thing, and wore thy shape ! 
I saw thee, and the passionate heart of man 
EnterVl the breast of the wild-dreaming boy. 
And from that hour I grew — what to the last 
I shall be — thine adorer ! Well ; this love, 
Vain, fi-antic, guilty, if thou wilt, became 
A fountain of ambition and bright hope ; 
I thought of tales that by the winter hearth 
Old gossips tell — how maidens sprung from Kings 
Have stoop'd from their high sphere ; how Love, like Death, 
Levels all ranks, and lays the shepherd's crook 
Beside the sceptre. Thus I made my home 
In the soft palace of a fairy Future ! 
My father died ; and I, the peasant-born. 
Was my own lord. Then did I seek to rise 
Out of the prison of my mean estate ; 
And, with such jewels as the exploring Mind 
Brings from the caves of Knowledge, buy my ransom 
From those twin gaolers of the daring heart — 
Low Birth and iron Fortune. Thy bright image, 
Glass'd in my soul, took all the hues of glory, 
And lured me on to those inspiring toils 
By which man masters men ! For thee I giew 
A midnight student o'er the dreams of sages ! 
For thee I sought to borrow from each Grace, 
And every Muse, such attributes as lend 



46 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act hi. 

Ideal charms to Love. I thought of thee, 
And Passion taught me poesy — of thee, 
And on the painter's canvass grew the life 
Of beauty ! — Art became the shadow 
Of the dear starlight of thy haunting eyes ! 
Men caird me vain — some mad — I heeded not ; 
But still toil'd on — hoped on — for it was sweet. 
If not to win, to feel more worthy thee I 

PAULINE. , ■'/ J ' ' / / 

Haa h^^ a magio to cgoroioQ hato ? . /i^/t^ ^o J.Ce.^i-^-^. o.c-^ ^/t- 

MELNOTTE. 

At last, in one mad hour, I dared to pour 

The thoughts that burst their channels into song, 

And sent them to thee — such a tribute, lady, 

As beauty rarely scorns, even from the meanest. 

The name — appended by the burning heart 

That long'd to show its idol what bright things 

It had created — yea, the enthusiast's name. 

That should have been thy triumph, was thy scorn! 

That very hoiu* — when passion, turned to wrath, 

Resembled hatred most — when thy disdain 

Made my whole soul a chaos — in that hour 

The tempters found me a revengeful tool 

For their revenge ! Thou hadst trampled on the worm — 

It turn'd and stung thee ! 

PAULINE. 

Love, Sir, hath no sting. 
What was the slight of a poor powerless girl 
To the deep wrong of this most vile revenge .'' 
Oh, how I loved this man ! — a serf ! — a slave ! 

MELNOTTE. 

Hold, lady ! — No, not slave ! Despair is free ! 
I will not tell thee of the throes — the sti-uggles — ■ 
The anguish — the remorse : No — let it pass \ 
And let me come to such most poor atonement 

Yet in my power. Pauline ! 

{Approaching her with great emotion^ and about to take her 

hand.) 

PAULINE. 

No, touch me not ! 
I know my fate. You are, by law, my tyrant ; 
And I — oh Heaven ! — a peasant's wife ! I'll work — 
Toil — drudge— do what thou wilt — but touch me not ; 
Let my wrongs make me sacred ! 



SCENE ir.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 47 

MELNOTTE. 

Do not fear me. 
Thou dost not know me, Madam : at the altai- 
My vengeance ceased — my guilty oath expir'd ! 
Henceforth, no image of some marble saint, 
Nich'd in cathedral aisles, is hallow'd more 
From the rude hand of sacrilegious wrong. 
I am thy husband — nay, thou need'st not shudder j — 
Here, at thy feet, I lay a husband's rights. 
A marriage thus unholy — unfulfill'd — 
A bond of fraud — is, by the laws of France, 
Made void and null. To-night sleep — sleep in peace. 
To-morrow, pure and virgin as, this morn 
I bore thee, bathed in blushes, from the slu'ine, 
Thy father's arms shall take thee to thy home. 
The law shall do thee justice, and restore 
Thy right to bless another with thy love. 
And when thou art happy, and hast half forgot 
Him who so loved — so wrong'd thee, think at least 
Heaven left some remnant of the angel still 
In that poor peasant's nature I 

Ho ! my mother ! 

Enter Widow. /^/7J I'/i </< /*^ "^-^ 
Conduct this lady — (she is not my wife; 
She is our guest, — our honoui''d guest, my mother I) — 
To the poor chamber, where the sleep of virtue, 
Never, beneath my father's honest roof, 
Ev'n villains dared to mar ! Now, lady, now, 
I think thou wilt believe me. — Go, my mother ! 

WIDOW. ^^..^ 

She is not thy wife ! — 

MELNOTTE. 

Hush ! hush ! for mercy's sake ! 
Speak not, but go. 

(Widow ascends the stairs; Pauline follows weeping — turns 
to look back.) 

MELNOTTE {sinking doion). 

All angels bless and guard her ! 

^ / BND OP ACT III. 



i 



/ 



18 THE LADY OF LYONS j [act ly 

ACT IV. 

SCENE L 

The cottage as before — Melnotte seated before a table—' 
writing implements, 8fc. — {Dag breaking.) 

MELNOTTE. J^^^ ^ ""*"!>/ 

Hush, hush! — she sleeps at last! — thank Heaven, for 
awhile she forgets even that I live ! Her sobs, which have 
gone to my heart the whole, long, desolate night, have ceased ! 
— all calm — all still ! I will go now ; I will send this letter 
to Pauline's father — when he arrives, I Avill place in his hands 
my own consent to the divorce, and then, O France ! my 
country ! accept among thy protectors, thy defenders — the 
Peasant's Son ! Our country is less proud than Custom, and 
does not refuse the blood, the heart, the right hand of the 
poor man ' y ^ 

Enter Widow. J P i ^>'^- x/r^c.^ 

WIDOW. ^' ^' 

My son, thou hast acted ill ; but sin brings its own punish- 
ment. In the hour of thy remorse, it is not for a mother to 
reproach thee ! 

MELNOTTE. ^ 

What is past is past. There is a future left to all men, 
who have the virtue to repent and the energy to atone. Thou 
shalt be proud of thy son yet. Meanwhile, remember this 
poor lady has been grievously injured. For the sake of thy 
son's conscience, respect, honour, bear with her. If she weep, 
console — if she chide, be silefit! 'Tis but a little while 
more — I shall send an express fast as horse can speed to her 
father. Farewell ! — I shall retm-n shortly 

WIDOW 

It is the only course left to thee — tliou wert led astray, but 
thou art not hardened. Thy heart is right still, as ever it was 
when, in thy most ambitious hopes, thou wert never ashamed 
of thy poor mother ! 

MELNOTTE. 

Ashamed of thee ! — No, if I yet endure, yet live, yet hope — 
it is only because I would not die till I have redeemed the 
noble heritage I have lost — the heritage I took unstained fi'oin 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 4t» 

tl;ee and my dead lather — a proud conscience and an honest 
name. I shall win them back yet — Heaven bless you ! -, j— 

\Exit.M -r 
WIDOW, .y ^' '^ - - J ^^ ,,. T^^o , ^ 
My dear Claude ! — How my heart bleeds for nim ! 
(Pauline looks down from above, and after a pause descends.) 

PAULINE. /^ (^ 
Not here ! — he spares me that pain at least: so far he is 
considerate — yet the place seems still more desolate without 
him. Oh, that I could hate him — the j^ardener's son ! — and 
yet how nobly he — no — no — no I will not be so mean a thing 
as to forgive him ! 

WIDOW. 

Good morning, Madam ; I would have waited on you if 
I had knowTi you were stirring. 

PAULINE. 

It is no matter, Ma'am — your son's wife ought to wait on 
herself. 

WIDOW 

My son's wife — let not that thought vex you, IMadam — he 
tells me that you will have your divorce. And I hope I ohall 
Fvn tn nop him fimilr ngnin — Thovc are maiden a in thia 
vill^ a ' gc, ^ u un^ and fair, Madam, uho juay yot console him. — 

PAULINE. 

' I dcTir aay — thoj'^ arc vorjr wulcomo and when the divorce 
is got, he will marry again. I am sure I hope so. ( Weeps.) 

WIDOW. 

He could have mamed the richest girl in the province, if 
he had pleased it ; but his head was turned, poor child ! — he 
could think of nothing but you. ( Weeps.) 

PAULINE. 

Don't weep, mother. 

WIDOW. 

Ah, he has behaved very ill, I know — T)ut love is so liead- 
strong in the young. Don't weep, ]\Iadnm, 

PAULIME . 

-fe o, afe you wer e s ajring gu cm. 

WIDOW'. 

Oh, I cannot excuse him. Ma'am — he was not in his 
right senses. 

PAULINE. 

But he always —always (sobbing) loved — loved me tl»eu? 

D 



50 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act iv. 

WIDOW. 

He thought of nothing else. See here — he leanit to paint 
that he might take your likeness [uncocers the picture). But 
that's all over now — I trust you have cured him of his 
folly ; — but, dear heart, you have had no breakfast ! 

PAULINE. 

I can't take anything — don't trouble yourself. 

WIDOW. 
Nny, Mn-ln^, '^■" pm-mnflnrl 3 n Uttlft onf^pp will rAfrpmh 

you r Our milk and ogga are e x^ollonti — I will got out . 
'C k.ude''!s uufTut-'mp — it is of real Sevvo , he oarr rl up n il 
h] 9 mmifly to . buy it three years a g ^^, Ifen^n-o tVin -nnmn nf 
Tiiiiiine wao inooribcd on i t. 

PAULINE. 

Thr"" yQ?-'-'^ <^g" ' Vnur (]^auf\p.^ Thnnk y^n ; T think T 
' j Yill hnyp r"m" ^^ffV" Oh ! if he were but a poor geuile- 
man, even a merchant : but a gardener's son — and what a 
home ! — Oh no, it is too dreadful ! 

{Tl ley seat themselves at the table, Beauseant opens the 
lattice and looks in.) 

beauseant. 
So — so — the coast is clear ! I saw Claude in the lane— 
I shall have an excellent opportunity. 

{Shuts the lattice and knocks at the door.) 

PAULINE {starting). 
Can it be my father .'' — he has not sent for him yet ? No, 
he cannot be in such a hurry to get rid of me. 

WIDOW. 

It is not time for yom' fat]jer to arrive yet ; it must be 
some neighbour, f tc i < > / /«. < <;^<^ f c» v 

PAULINE. 

Don't admit any one. 

f \Vlduu uyj u y<^ ik(. doo*.^ Beauseant pushes her aside 
and enters.) 
Ha ! Heavens ! that hateful Beauseant ! This is indeed 
bitter ! 

beauseant. a C^ 
Good morning, Madam ! Oh, Widow, your son begs you 
will have the goodness tc go to him in the village — he wants 
to speak to you on particular business ; you'll find him at 
die inn, or the grocer's shop, or the baker's, or at some other 
friend's of your family — make haste. 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 51 

PAULINE. 

Don't leave me, mother ! — don't leave me 

BEAUSEANT {icitli cjrcat respect). 
Be not alarmed, Madam. Believe me your friend — your 
servant. 

PAULINE, 

Sir I have no fear of you, even in this house ! Go, Ma- 
dam, if your son wishes it ; I vpill not contradict his com- 
mands vfhilst, at least, he has still the right to be obeyed. 

WIDOW, ^c^t ^^c I ' /^ ^f^^^ 
I don't understand this ; however, I shan't be long gone 

\_Exit. l^J^ 

PAULINE. 

Sir, I divine the object of your visit — you wish to exult in 
the humiliation of one who humbled you. Be it so j I am 
prepared to endure all — even your presence ' 

BEAUSEANT. A ^ 

You mistake me. Madam — Pauline, you mistake me ! I 
come to lay my fortune at your feet. You must already be 
disenchanted with this impostor ; these walls are not worthy 
to be hallowed by your beauty ! Shall that form be clasped 
in the arms of a base-born peasant } Beloved, beautiful 
Pauline ! fly with me — my canriage waits without — I will 
bear you to a home more meet for your reception. Wealth, 
luxury, station — all shall yet be yours. I forget your past 
disdain — I remember only your beauty and my unconquer- 
able love ! 

PAULINE. ^ 

Sir ! leave this house — it is humble : but a husband's roof, 
however lowly, is, in the eyes of God and man, the temple of 
a wife's honour ! Know that I would rather starve — yes — 
with him who has betrayed me, than accept your lawful 
hand, even were you the Prince whose name he bore ! — Go. 

BEAUSEANT. 

What ! is not your pride humbled yet ? 

PAULINE. 
- S ir, whQt> - was pr i de in proapcritjr in - gffliotion becomes virtit e> 

BEAUSEANT. 

Look round : these rugged floors — these homely walls — 
this wretched struggle of poverty for comfort— think of this ! 
and contrast with such a picture the refinement, the luxury, 
the pomp, that the wealthiest gentleman of Lyons offers to 
tlie loveliest lady. Ah, hear me ! 

Sjl^ D 2 



62 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act iv. 

PAULINE. 

Oh ! my father ! — why did I leave you ? — why am I thus 
friendless ? Sir, you see before you a betrayed, injured, 
miserable woman I — respect her anguish ! 
(Melnotte opens the door silently, and pauses at the threshold.) 

BEADSEANT. 

No ! let me rather thus console it ; let me snatch from those 
lips one breath of that fragrance which never should be wasted 
on the low churl thy husband. 

PAULINE. 

Help ! Claude ! — Claude ! — Have I no protector ? 

BEAUSEANT. 

Be silent ! {shewing a pistol.) See, I do not come unpre- 
pared even for violence. 1 will brave all things — thy husband 
and all his race — for thy sake. Thus, then, 1 clasp thee ! 
MELNOTTE {dashing him to the other end of the stage), A^ 
Pauline — look up, Pauline ! thou art safe. 

BEAUSEANT {levelling his pistol). 
Dare you thus insult a man of my birth, ruffian ? 

PAULINE. 

Oh, spare him — spare my husband ! — Beauseant — Claude 
— no — no — {faints) . 

MELNOTTE. d 

Miserable trickster ! shame upon you ! brave devices to 
terrify a woman ! Coward ! — you ti-emble — you have outraged 
the laws — you know that your weapon is harmless — you 
have the courage of the mountebank, not the bravo! — 
Pauline, there is no danger. 

BEAUSEANT. 

I wish thou wert a gentleman — as it is thou art beneath me. 
—Good day, and a happy honeymoon. {Aside) I will not 
die till I am avenged, [Exit. J)]^ 

MELNOTTE. 

I hold her in these arms — the last embrace ! 

Never, ah never more, shall this dear head 

Be pillow'd on the heart that should have shelter'd 

And has betray'd ! Soft— soft ! one kiss— poor wretch ! 

No scorn on that pale lip forbids me now ! 

One kiss — so ends all record of my crime ! 

It is the seal upon the tomb of Hope, 

By which, like some lost, sorrowing angel, sits 

Sad Memory evermore j — she breathes — she moves— 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 53 

She wakes to scorn, to hate, but not to shudder 



Beneath the touch of my abhorred love. , tjy 



{Places her on a seat.) ^ ^ /-<' ^ 
There — we are strangers now ! 

PAULINE. 

All gone — all calm- 
Is every thing a dream ? thou art safe, unhurt — 
I do not love thee ; but — but I am woman, 
And — and — no blood is spilt ? 

MELNOTTE. 

No, lady, no ; 
My guilt hath not deserved so rich a blessing 
As even danger in thy cause. 

Enter Widow. Jy^ 

WIDOW, 

My son, I have been everywhere in search of you j why 
did you send for me ? 

MELNOTTE. /^ 

I did not send for you. 

WIDOW. ^ 

No ! but I must tell you your express has returned. 

MELNOTTE. 

So soon ! impossible ! 

WIDOW. 

Yes, he met the lady's father and mother on the road ; they 
were going into the country on a visit. Your messenger says 
that Monsieur Deschappelles turned almost white with anger 
when he read your letter. They will be here almost imme- 
diately. Oh, Claude, Claude I Avhat will they do to you ? 
How I tremble ! — Ah, Madam ! do not let them injure him 
— if you knew how he doted on you ! 

PAULINE. /L. 
Injure him ! no. Ma'am, be not afraid ; — my father ! how 
shall I meet him ? how go back to Lyons ? the scoff of the 
whole city ! — Cruel, cruel, Claude — {in great agitation) — 
Sir, you have acted most treacherously, 

MELNOTTE. 

I know it. Madam. 

PAULINE. 

{Aside.) If he would but ask me to forgive him ! — I never 
can forgive you. Sir ! 



54 THE LADY OF LYONS; [act tv. 

MELNOTTE. 

I never dared to hoj)e it. 

PAULINE. 

But you are my husband now, and I have sworn to— to 
love you, Sir. 

MELNOTTE. 

That was under a false belief, Madam ; Heaven and the 
laws will release you fiom your vow. 

PAULINE. 

He will drive me mad ! if he were but less proud — if ho 
Avould but ask me to remain — hark, hark — I hear the wheels 
of the carriage — Sir — Claude, they are coming; have you no 
word to say ere it is too late ? Quick — speak. 

MELNOTTE. 

I can only congratulate you on your release. Behold your 
parents ! 

Enter Monsieur and Madame Deschappelles and 

Colonel Damas. ^^ ^^ ^[ ^ VV / 

MONS. DESCHAP. -) / . I 

My child !— my child ! / ^^ ^ ^ /e ^ad^^ ^ « < ^ 

MADAME DESCHAP. J 

Oh my poor Pauline ! — what a villanous hovel this is ! Old 
woman, get me a chair — I shall faint — 1 certainly shall. 
What will the world say .'' — Child, you have been a fool. A 
mother's heart is easily broken. ^«Zy«^j /u. i o /xa ' L~ C 

DAMAS. ^ C 

Ha, ha ! — most noble Prince — I am sorry to see a man of 
your quality in such a condition ; I am afraid your Highness 
will go to the House of Correction. 

MELNOTTE. /^ 

Taunt on, Sir ; I spared you when you were unarmed — I 
am unarmed now. A man who has no excuse for crime is 
indeed defenceless ! 

DAMAS. 

There's something fine in the rascal, after all ' 

MONS. DESCHAP. r 

Where is the impostor ? — Are you thus shameless, traitor? 
Can you brave the presence of that girl's father? 

MELNOTTE. A 

Strike me, if it please you — you are her father i 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 65 

PAULINE. C 

Sir — sir, for my sake; — whatever his guilt, he has acted 
nobly in atonement. 

MADAME DESCHAP. ^ ^ 

Nobly ! Are you mad, girl ? I have no patience with 
you — to disgrace all your family thus ! — Nobly ! Oh you 
abominable, hardened, pitiful, mean, ugly villain 1 

DAMAS. li< /- <*^< t-'- c 

Ugly ! Why he was beautiful yesterday ! 

PAULINE. 

Madam, this is his roof, and he is my husband. Respect 
your daughter, or let blame fall alone on her. 

MADAIME DESCHAP. 

You — you — Oh, I'm choking. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

Sir, it were idle to waste rej^roach upon a conscience lilce 
yours — you renounce all pretensions to the person of this lady .? 

MELNOTTE. A- CL 

I do. {Gives a paper.) Here is my consent to a divorce 
— my full confession of the fraud which annuls the marriage. 
Your daughter has been foully wronged — I grant it. Sir ; but 
her own lips will tell you that, from the hour in which she 
crossed this threshold, I returned to my own station, and 
respected hers. Pure and inviolate, as when yestermorn you 
laid your hand upon her head, and blessed her, 1 yield her 
back to you. For myself — I deliver you for ever from my 
presence. An outcast and a criminal, I seek some distant land, 
where I may moiu-n my sin, and pray for your daughter's peace 
Farewell — farewell to you all, for ever ! 

WIDOW. A 
Claude, Claude, you will not leave your poor old mother ' 
She does not disown you in your sorrow — no, not even in your 
guilt. No divorce can separate a mother fi'om her son. 

PAULINE. 

This poor widow teaches me my duty. No, mother — i?c, 
for you are now vii/ mother also ! — nor should any law, hump.n 
or divine, separate the wife from her husband's sorrow^. 
Claude — Claude — all is forgotten — forgiven — I am thine 
forever! d.^UKtl , A/..^ /( C 

MADAME DESCHAP. A {* 

What do I hear ? — Come away, or never see my face again. 

MONS. DESCHAP. C 

Pauline, wc never betrayed you I — do you forsake us for 
him ? 



56 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act iv. 

PAULINE {going back to her father). 
Oh, no — but you will forgive him too j we will live together 
■ — he shall be your son. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

Never ! Cling to him and forsake your parents ! His home 
shall be yours — his fortune yours — his fate yours : the wealth 
I have acquired by honest industry shall never enrich the dis- 
honest man. 

PAULINE. 

And you would have a wife enjoy luxury while a husband 
toils ! Claude, take me ; thou canst not give me wealth, titles, 
station — but thou canst give me a true heart. I will work for 
thee, tend thee, bear with thee, and never, never shall these 
lijDS rej^roach thee for the past. 

TH "^^^ lTn...n.n,1 if T n.nn i-. r>t ^0111^ tfl llluhbor ' 

MELNOTTE. 

This is the heaviest blow of all ! — What a heart I have 
wronged! — Do not fear me. Sir; I am not all hardened — I 
will not rob her of a holier love than mine. Pauline ! — angel 
of love and mercy ! — your memory shall lead me back to 
virtue ! — The husband of a being so beautiful in her noble and 
sublime tenderness may be poor — may be low-born; — (there 
is no guilt in the decrees of Providence !) — but he should be 
one who can look thee in the face without a blush, — to whom 
thy love does not bring remorse, — who can fold thee to his 
heart, and say, — " Here there is no deceit !" 1 am not that 

DAMAS {aside to melnotte). w>Uj? ^^"^^^^ ,^/r^ /^ 
Thou art a noble fellow, notwithstanding ; and would' st 
make an excellent soldier. Serve in my regiment. I have had 
a letter from the Directory — our young General takes the com- 
mand of the army in Italy, — I am to join him at Marseilles, — 
I will depart this day, if thou wilt go with me. 

MELNOTTE. /^ ( ' 

It is the favour I would have asked thee, if I dared. Place 
me wherever a foe is most dreaded, — wherever France most 
needs a life ! 

DAMAS. 

There shall not be a forlorn hope without thee ! 

MELNOTTE. 

There is my hand ! — Mother ! your blessing. I shall see 
you again, — a better man than a prince, — a man who has 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 67 

bought the right to high thoughts by brave deeds. And thou i 
■ — thou ! so wildly worshipped, so guiltily betrayed, — all is 
not yet lost ! — for thy memory, at least, must be mine till 
death ! If I live, the name of him thou hast once loved shall 
not rest dishonoured ; — if I fall, amidst the carnage and the 
roar of battle, my soul will fly back to thee, and liOve shall 
share with Death my last sigh ! — More — more would I speak 
to thee ! — to pray ! — to bless ! But no ! — When I am less 
unworthy I will utter it to Heaven ! — I cannot trust myself 

to {turning to Deschappelles). Your pardon, Sir; — 

they are my last words — Farewell ! 

\JsTTtt7 
DAMAS. 

T ^jW\ ^r. o4Vor ^n^^m. — Frauoo wlll thault mo for thio. - 

PAULINE {starting from her father'' s arms), 
Claude! — Claude! — my husband ! ^\. / ; / / a 

WOBM i DEOOUAP/ / 

/ ■ . o 



EN J) oy ACT ir. 






58 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act v, 

ACT V. 

SCENE L 



Two years and a half from the date of Act IV. 

The Streets of Lyons. 
Enter First, Second, mid Third Qfficorc ' ^ 

FIRST OFFICER. 

Well, here we are at Lyons, with gallant old Damas : it is 
liis native place. 

SECOND OFFICER. 

Yes ; he has gained a step in the army since he was here last. 
The Lyonnese ought to be very proud of stout General Damas. 

flni I yil T RP - OFFICER. 

Promotion is quick in the French army. This mysterious 
Morier, — the hero of Lodi, and the favourite of the Com- 
mander-in-Chief, — has risen to a colonel's rank in two years 
and a half. ^ 

Enter Damas, as a General. /C 

DAMAS. 

Good morrow, gentlemen ; I hope you will amuse your- 
selves during our short stay at Lyons. It is a fine city: 
improved since I left it. Ah ! it is a pleasure to grow old, — • 
wlien the years that bring decay to ourselves do but ripen the 
prosperity of our country. V ou have not met with Morier ? 

FIRST OFFICER. 

No : we were just speaking of him. 

SECOND OFFICER. 

Pray, General, can you tell us who this Morier really is ? 

DAMAS. 

Is ! — why a Colonel in the French army, 

Jin H TMIIM] OFFICER. 

True. But what was he at first ? 

DAMAS. 

At first ? — Why a baby in long clothes, I suppose. 

FIRST OFFICER. 

Ha ! — ha ! — Ever facetious. General. 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRTDE. , 50 

SECOND OFFICER (^0 Tllild) ^^^^-^ / [ 

The General is sore upon this point j you will only chafe 
him, — Any commands, General ?^!^ a -^ -^ ^ - - ^- ^^ 

DAMAS. 

None. — Good day to you ! ^^ 

[^jwrnf*- Second iuitl Tlilid O fficers^. 

DAMAS. 

Our comrades are very inquisitive. Poor Morier is the 
subject of a vast deal of curiosity. 

FIRST OFFICER. ^ 

Say interest, rather, General. His constant melancholy, — 
the loneliness of his habits, — his daring valour, his brilliant 
rise in the profession, — your fi'iendship, and the favours of the 
Commander-in-Chief, — all tend to make him as much the 
mutter of gossip as of admiration. But where is he, General ? 
I have missed him all the morning. 

DAMAS. 

Why, Captain, I'll let you into a secret. My young friend 
has come with me to Lyons in hopes of finding a miracle 

FIRST OFFICER. 

A miracle ! — 

DAMAS. 

Yes, a miracle ! in other words, — a constant woman. 

FIRST OFFICER. /I 

Oh ! — an affair of love ! 

DAMAS. /L- 

Exactly so. No sooner did he enter Lyons than he waved 
his hand to me, threw himself from his horse, and is now, 
I warrant, asking every one who cnn know anything about 
the matter, whether a certain lady is still true to a certain 
gentleman ! 

FIRST OFFICER. 

Success to him ! — and of that success there can be no 
doubt. The gallant Colonel Morier, the hero of Lodi, might 
make his choice out of the proudest families in France. 

DAMAS. 

Oh, if pride be a recommendation, the lady and her mother 
are most handsomely endowed. By the way. Captain, if you 
should chance to meet with Morier, tell him he will find me 
at the hotel. •/ f 

FIRST OFFICER. ^^^ ^"^ ^ ^*y ^ A^ 

1 will, General. \Exit. 



60 THE LADY OF LYONS; [act v. 

DAM AS. 

Now will I go to the Deschappelles, and make a report to 
my young Colonel. Ha ! by Mars, Bacchus, Apollo, Vvo- 
rum, — here comes Monsieur Beauseant ! 

Enter Beauseant. X 2- ^ 
Good morrow, Monsieur Beauseant ! How fares it with you ? 

beauseant {aside). 
Damas ! that is unfortunate ; — if the Italian campaign 
should have filled his pockets, he may seek to baffle me in 
the moment of my victory. {Aloud.) Your servant, General, 
— for such, I think, is your new distinction ! Just anived in 
Lyons ? 

DAMAS. 

Not an hour ago. Well, how go on the Deschappelles ? 
Have they forgiven you in that affair of young Melnotte ? 
You had some hand in that notable device, — eh ? 

BEAUSEANT. 

Why, less than you think for ! The fellow imposed upon 
me. I have set it all right now. What has become of him ? 
He could not have joined the army, after all. There is no 
such name in the books. 

DAMAS. 

I know nothing about Melnotte. As you say, I never 
heard the name in the Grand Army. 

BEAUSEANT. 

tiem ! — You are not married. General ? 

DAMAS. 

Do I look like a married man, Sir ? — No, thank Heaven ! 
My profession is to make widows, not wives. 

BEAUSEANTo 

You must have gained much booty in Italy ! Pauline will 
be your heiress — eh ? 

DAMAS, 

Booty ! Not I ! Heiress to what ? Two trunks and a 
portmanteau, — four horses, — three swords, — two suits of 
regimentals, and six pair of white leather inexpressibles ! A 
pretty fortune for a young lady ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

{Aside.) Then all is safe ! {Aloud.) Ha ! ha ! Is that really 
all your capital, General Damas ? Why, I thought Italy had 
been a second Mexico to vou soldiers, 



SCENE I.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 61 

DAMAS. 

All a toss-up, Sir. I was not one of the lucky ones ! My 
friend, Morier, indeed, saved something handsome. But out 
Commander-in-Chief took care of him, and Morier is a 
thrifty, economical dog, — not like the rest of us soldiers, wVo 
spend our money as carelessly as if it were our blood. 

BEAUSEANT. A ^ 

Wer, it is no matter ! I do not want fortune with Pauline. 
And you must know, General Damas, that your fair cousin has 
at length consented to reward my long and ardent attachment. 

DAMAS. / C 
You ! — the devil 1 Why she is already married ! There 
is no divorce ! 

BEAUSEANT. 

True ; but this very day she is formally to authorize the 
necessary proceedings, — this very day she is to sign the con- 
tract that is to make her mine within one week from the day 
on which her present illegal marriage is annulled. 

DAMAS. 

You tell me wonders! — Wonders! No; I believe any- 
thing of women ! Cyi^-crj--^ l^^ ^ £> /v 

BEAUSEANT. 

I must wish you good morning, 

{As he is going, enter Deschappelles.)"^ 

MONS. DESCHAP. '^T^ 

Oh, Beauseant! well met. Let us come to the notary at once. 

DAMAS {to DESCHAPPELLES). 

Why, cousin ! 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

Damas, welcome to Lyons. Pray call on us ; my wife will 
be delighted to see you. 

DAMAS. 

Your wife be blessed for her condescension ! But 

{taking him aside) what do I hear ? Is it possible that your 
daughter has consented to a divorce .? — that she will marry 
Monsieur Beauseant ? '. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

Certainly I Wliat have you to say against it ! A gentle- 
man of birth, fortune, character. We are not so proud as we 
were ; even my wife has had enough of nobility and princes ! 

DAMAS. 

But Pauline loved that young man so tenderly ! 



62 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act v. 

MONS, DESCHAP. {taking snuff). 
That was two years and a half ago ! 

DAMAS. 

Very true. Poor Meluotte ! 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

But do not talk of that impostor ; I hope he is dead or ha < 
left the country. Nay, even were he in Lyons at this moment, 
he ought to rejoice that, in an honourable and suitable alliance, 
my daughter may forget her sufferings and his crime. 

DAMAS. 

Nay, if it be all settled, I have no more to say. Monsieur 
Beauseant informs me that the contract is to be signed this 
very day. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

It is ; at one o'clock precisely. Will you be one of the 
witnesses ? 

DAMAS. 

I ? — No ; that is to say — yes, certainly ! — at one o'clock 
I will wait on you. 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

Till then, adieu — come, Beauseant. / I C 

[J5'a;eM?i^ Beauseant and Deschappklles, ^ / ^ 

DAMAS. 

The man who sets his heart upon a woman 

Is a chameleon, and doth feed on air ; 

From air he takes his colours, — holds his life, — 

Changes with every wind, — grows lean or fat, 

Rosy with hope, or green with jealousy, 

Or pallid with despair — ;just as the gale 

Varies from north to south — from heat to cold ! 

Oh, woman I woman ! thou shouldst have few sins 

Of thine own to answer for ! Thou ait the author 

Of such a book of follies in a man. 

That it would need the tears of all the angels 

To blot the record out ! 

Enter Melnotte, ipale and agitated, X ' l^~. 
1 need not tell thee ! Thou hast heard — 

MELNOTTE. 

The worst ! 
I have ! 

DAMAS. 

Be cheer'd j others are fair as she is I 



SCENE 1.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 03 

MELNOTTE. 

Others ! — The world is crumbled at ray feet ! 
8he was ray world ; fill'd up the whole of being — 
Smiled in the sunshine — walk'd the glorious earth — 
Sate in my heart — was the sweet life of life. 
The Past was hers : I dreamt not of a Future 
That did not wear her shape ! Mem'ry and Hope 
Alike are gone. Pauline is faithless! Hfurnforth 
Xli£-u~ai'^e ^'Dtd apace io doco l a t&I 

DAMAS. 

Hope yet. 

MELNOTTE. 

Plope, yes ! — one hope is left me still— 
A soldier's grave ! Glory has - died with Lot — 
I looli into ray heart; and^ whoro I caw — 

•Pi^iilino ^c^ "null 111 I 

{After a pause.) — But ara I not deceived ? 
I went but by the ruraour of the town ; 
Rumour is false, — I was too hasty ! Damas, 
Whom hast thou seen ? 

DAMAS. 

Thy rival and her father. 
Arm thyself for the truth — He heeds not — 

MELNOTTE. 

She 
Will never know how deeply she was loved ! 
Thp rhfiritnMo nighty th?t w^^t t" ^■"^7^ 
C o uifuil Lu day; in bi'ight and eloquent dvrira'ij 
Ia4icnccforth loaguod with mioory 1 — Sloop, 
Or olco booomc eternal ! Oh, llit uaklii^i, ■- 
From faloo oblivion, and to 000 the oun, 
And k n ow oho io anotlicr'a ! 

DAMAS. 

Be a man I 

MELNOTTE. 

I am a man ! — it is the sting of woe 
Like mine that tells us we are raen ! 

DAMAS. 

The false one 
Did not deserve thee. 

MELNOTTE. 

Hush ! — No word against her! 
Why should she keep, through years and silent absence, 
The holy tablets of her virgin faith 
True to a traitor's name ! Oh, blame her not j 



64 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act v. 

It were a sharper grief to think her worthless 

Than to be what I am ! To-day, — to-day ! 

They said " To-day!" This day, so wildly welcomed — 

This day, my soul had singled out of time 

And maVk'd for bliss ! This day ! oh, could I see her. 

See her once more unknown ; but hear her voice. 

S o that one ooho of . i ts mucio might 

Mako ruin less appalling in its - silenr'P . 

DAMAS. 

Easily done ! Come with me to her house ; 
Your dress — yom* cloak — moustache — the bronzed hues 
Of time and toil — the name you bear — belief 
In your absence, — all will ward away suspicion. 
Keep in the shade. Ay, I would have you come. 
There may be hope ! ^^"^irp ]r\ yrt. r,n ynrng, 
Thpy mny hnv^ fnrppd h"^ ^^ jTiqcq ef^nr,-nA ^^v\A'l'\s 
Out of mistaken lov^ 

MELNOTTE. 

No, bid me hope not ' 
Bid me not hope ' I could not bear again 
To fall from such a heaven ! One gleam of sunshine, 
And the ice breaks and I am lost ! Oh, Damas, 
There's no such thing as courage in a man ; 
The veriest slave that ever crawl'd fi'om danger 
Might spurn me now. When fii'st I lost her, Damas, 
I bore it, did I not ? I still had hope, 
And now I — I — {Bursts into an agony of grief .^ 

DAMAS. 

What, comrade ! all the women 
That ever smiled destruction on brave hearts 
Were not worth tears like these ! 

MELNOTTE. 

'Tis past — forget it. 
I am proparod ; life-hag no fvuih f ?r ill n ' 

TVin nlnnrl ]i a t^ |^vnl-^ji in that gtnrmy rrn'rij 

Ami- on the waste I s tand, alone with Heaven - ^ 

DAMAS. 

His very face is changed ; a breaking heart 

Does its work soon ! — Come, Melnotte, rouse thyself: 

One effort more. Again thoult see her. 

MELNOTTE 

See lier \ 
Thnrr ii n pirrinn in thnt rimp"''^ cnntp^ipp 
Th ^it ohivm'o all the pride aad power o f reaso;* .! . 
I nto ft - chaoa ! 



SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 65 

DAMAS. 

Time wanes ; — come, ere yet 
It be too late. 

MELNOTTE. 

Terrible words—" Too late!" 
Lead on. One last look more, and then 

DAMAS. 

Forget her ! 

MELNOTTE. 

Forget her, yes ! — For death remembers not. [Exeunt. /__ / t 



SCENE II. 

A room in the house of Monsieur Deschappelles ; Pauline 
seated in great dejection. X^c' 

PAULINE. 

It is so, then. I must be false to Love, 
Or sacrifice a father ! Oh, my Claude, 
My lover, and my husband ! Have I lived 
To pray that thou may'st find some fairer boon 
Than the deep faith of this devoted heart, — 
Nourished till now — now broken ? 

Enter Monsieur DESCHAPPELLES.y2t5 /=.«--- C* 

MONS. DESCHAP. ^ 

My dear child, 
How shall 1 thank — how bless thee ? Thou hast saved, 
I will not say my fortune — I could bear 
Reverse, and shrink not — but that prouder wealth 
Which merchants value most — my name, my credit — 
The hard-won honours of a toilsome life : — 
These thou hast saved, my child ! , 

PAULINE. /C ^ 

Is tliere no hope ? 
No hope but this? 

MONS. DESCHAP. ^ 

None. If, without the sum 
Which Beauseant offers for thy hand, this day 
Sinks to the west — to-morrow brings our ruin ! 
And hundreds, mingled in that ruin, curse 
The bankrupt merchant ! and the insolvent herd 
We feasted and made merry cry in scorn, 
" How pride has fallen ! — Lo, the bankrupt merchant ! " 
My daughter, thou hast saved us! 

E 



66 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act \ 

PAULINE. 

And am lost ! 

MONS. DESCHAP. 

Come, let me hope that Beauseant's love 

PAULINE. 

His loye I 
Talk not of love. Love has no thought of self! 
Love buys not with the nithless usurer's gold 
The loathsome prostitution of a hand 
Without a heart ? Love sacrifices all things 
To bless the thing it loves ! He knows not love. 
Father, his love is hate — his hope revenge ! 
My tears, my anguish, my remorse for falsehood — - 
These are the joys that he wrings from our despair ! 

MONS. DESCHAP, 

If thou deem'st thus, reject him ! Shame and ruin 
Were better than thy misery ; — think no more on't. 
My sand is well-nigh run — what boots it when 
The glass is broken ? We'll annul the contract. 
And if to-moiTow in the prisoner's cell 
These aged limbs are laid, why still, my child, 
I'll think thou art spared ; and wait the Liberal Hour 
That lays the beggar by the side of kings ! 

PAULINE. 

No — no — forgive me ! You, my honour'd father, — 
You, who so loved, so cherished me, whose lips 
Never knew one harsh word ! I'm not ungrateful ; 
I am but human ! — hush ! Now, call the bridegroom — 
You see I am prepared — no tears— all calm ; 
But, father, talk no more of love ! 

MONS, DESCHAP, 

My child, 
*Tis but one struggle ; he is young, rich, noble ; 
Thy state will rank first 'mid the dames of Lyons ; 
And when this heart can shelter thee no more, 
Thy youth will not be guardianless. 

PAULINE, 

I have set 
My foot upon the ploughshare — I will pass 
The fiery ordeal, {Aside.) Merciful Heaven, support me 1 
And on the absent wanderer shed the light 
Of happier stars— lost evermore to me I 



SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 67 

Enter Madame Deschappelles, Beauseant, Glavis, and 

Notary. 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

Why, Pauline, you are quite in dishabille — you ought to be 
more alive to the importance of this joyful occasion. We had 
once looked higher, it is true ; but you see, after all, Monsieur 
Beauseant's father xoas a Marquis, and that's a great comfort! 
Pedigree and jointure ! you have thorn both iii INIoujicm - 
BoauQoant. — A ^vuuilg ' lA,dy de^ OiOllisl}' biuugltl up should uiil^i 
b aYctu ' ocuubideialioiis h llier (jhd'ice of ahuijbund; — first, is TiiS~' 
liirth honourablot poeendly; will his death be advantageuus? 

All '^thf'r Hfl'"g f1ot|^ni.> olTonIrl 1->a loft t,i pnrn»l^1 iii.inily I 

BEAUSEANT {approacldnfj, and waving aside Madame). <^ C_. 

Ah, Pauline ! let me hope that you are reconciled to an 
event which confers such rapture upon me. 

PAULINE. (^ 

I am reconciled to my doom. "^c ^r/^'^ ^ *-^ 

BEAUSEANT .^/s 6 

Doom is a harsh word, sweet lady. 
PAULINE (aside) . 

This man must have some mercy — his heart cannot be 
marble. (Aloud.) Oh, Sir, be just — be generous ! — Seize a 
noble triumph — a great revenge 1 — Save the father, and 
spare the child! 

BEAUSEANT (aside). 

Joy — joy alike to my hatred and my passion ! The haughty 
Pauline is at last my suppliant. (Aloud.) You ask from me 
what I have not the sublime virtue to grant — a virtue re- 
served only for the gardener's son ! I cannot forego my 
hopes in the moment of their fulfilment ! — I adhere to the 
contract — your father's rain or your hand ! 

PAULINE. 

Then all is over. — Sir, I have decided. 

( The Clock strikes One. 

Enter Damas and Melnotte. ,^ ^ , . . (^ 

damas. ^ 
Your servant, cousin Deschappelles. — Let me introduce 
Colonel Morier. , , 

MADAME DESCHAP. (curtsying very loiv.) /i C 
What, the celebrated hero .? This is, indeed, an honour ! 
(Melnotte hoxcsy and remains in the hack-ground.) 



63 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act v. 

DAMAS {to PAULINE). C 

My little cousin, I congratulate you ! What, no smile — 
no blush? You are going to be divorced from poor Mel- 
notte, and marry this rich gentleman. You ought to be 
excessively happy I 

PAULINE. 



': I'C' 



Happy ! 



DAMAS. 



AVhy, how pale you are, child '.—Poor Pauline ! Hist— 
confide in me ' Do they force you to this ? 

PAULINE. 

No! 

DAMAS. 

You act with your own free consent ? / /' " ^ % /^^ 

PAULINE, rrf^^ ^ V V 

My own consent — yes. 

DAMAS. 

Then you are the most— I will not say what you are ! 

PAULINE. 

You think ill of me — ^be it so — yet if you knew all 

DAMAS. 

There is some mystery — speak out, Pauline. 
PAULINE (suddenly). 

Oh ! perhaps you can save me I you are our relation — our 
friend. My father is on the verge of bankruptcy — this day 
he requires a large sum to meet demands that cannot be 
denied ; that sum Beauseant will Advance — this hand the 
condition of the barter. Save me if you have the means — 
save me ! You will be repaid above ! 

DAMAS (aside). 
I recant — Women are not so bad after all \— '{Aloud) 
Humph, child ! I cannot help you — I am too poor ! 

PAULINE, /c (J 

The last plank to which I clung is shivered ! 

DAMAS. C 
Hold— you see my friend Morier : Melnotte is his most 
intimate friend — fought in the same fields — slept in the 
same tent. Have you any message to send to Melnotte ? — 
any word to soften this blow ? 



SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 69 

PAULINE. (J7l 

He knows Melnotte — he will see him — he wjllhear_tW^^^ 
him my last farewell — {approaches Melnotte'P- He has a -^^ 
stern air — he turns away from me — he despises me ! — Sir, 
one word I beseech you. 

MELNOTTE. 

Her voice again ' How the old time comes o*er me ! 

DAMAS {to MADAME) ^' ^< ^ ^- ^^'^ \y f ^'^ 

Don't interrupt them. He is going to tell her what a rascal 
young Melnotte is 3 he knows him well, I promise you. 

MADAME DESCHAP 

So considerate in you, cousin Damas ! 

(Damas approaches Deschappelles converses apart 
with him in dumb shoio. — Deschappelles sheics him 
a papery which he inspects and takes.) 

PAULINE. 

Thrice have I sought to speak ; my courage fails me. — 
Sir, is it tiTie that you have known — nay, are 
The friend of— Melnotte ? 

MELNOTTE, 

Lady, yes ! — Myself 
And Misery know the man ! 

PAULINE. 

And you will see him, 
And you will bear to him — ay — word for word, 
All that this heart, which breaks in parting from him, 
Would send, ere still for ever .^ 

■M'LLiiJUi 1 ](,. 

- jle hath told- mc ^ 
You havo tho right t o cl ro onc from out the world 
A- worthier hrifilegromu ; — ha fuitguta all claim, 
Even to miirnuir at hi)- doomi — Speak on I— 

PAULINE. 

Tell him, for years I never nursed a thought 
That was not his ; — that on his wandering way, 
Daily and nightly, pour'd a mourner's prayers. 
Tell Irim ev'n now that I would rather share 
His lowliest lot, — walk by his side, an outcast, — 
\Vork for him, beg with him, — live upon the light 
Of one kind smile from him, — than wear the crown 
The Bourbon lost ! 



70 THE LADY OF LYONS ; [act v. 

MELNOTTE (^JtWu ^ 

Am I - tblroady mad -? 
' An d doQO dolitlum uttor onoh Dwcct Tr ovdo 
Into a Droamor'c oar i — ( dJinid) Y'ou love him thus, 
And yet desert him ? 

PAULINE. 

Say, that, if his eye 
Could read this heart, — its straggles, its temptations, — 
His love itself would pardon that desertion ! 
Look on that poor old man, — he is my father ; 
He stands upon the verge of an abyss ! — 
He calls his child to save him ! Shall I shrink 
From him who gave me birth ? — withhold my hand, 
And see a parent perish ? Tell him this. 
And say — that we shall meet again in Heaven ! 

MELNOTTE. 

Lady — I — I — what is this riddle ? — what 

The nature of this sacrifice ? /t, ^ /^ f < <. a c^ 

PAm . ii>' r ^ {p oi nting ia damas) -? ■ 
Go, aok him ! 

BEAUSEAnt {from the table) . 
The papers are prepared — we only need 
Yom" hand and seal. 

MELNOTTE. 

Stay, lady — one word more. 
Were but your duty with your faith united, 
Would you still share the low-born peasant'^ lot ? 

PAULINE. 

Would I ? Ah, better death with bin I love 
Than all the pomp — which is but as the flowers 
That crown the victim ! — {Turning meat/) I am ready- 

(Melnotte rushes to Damas.) 

DAMAS. /^ f-^fL- 

There— 
This is the schedule — this the total. 

BEAUSEANT {to DESCHAPPELLES, shetoing notes). 

'1 liHse 
Are yours the instant she has sign'd ; you are 
Still the great House of Lyons ! 

( The Notary is about to hand the Contract to Pauline, 
when Melnotte seizes it and tears it.) (^ 

BEAUSEANT. <a/ ^ ^€c ' 

Are you mad ? 



SCENE II.] OR, LOVE AND PRIDE. 71 

MONS. DESCHAP. ^y tJA^^rz.^^. 

How, Sir 1 What means this insult ? ^i / A -^ y 

MELNOTTE. C 

Peace, old man ! 
I have a prior claim. Before the face 
Of man and Heaven I urge it ; I outbid 
Yon sordid huckster for your priceless jewel. 

( Giving a pocket-hook.) 
There is the &um twice told ! Blush not to take it: 
There's not a coin that is not bought and hallow'd 
In the cause of nations with a soldier's blood ! 



-DEAUPEAN'P; 
I 






PAULINE. 

That voice ! Thou art — 

MELNOTTE. 

Thy husband ! 
(Pauline rushes into his arms.) 
Look up ! Look up, Pauline ! — for I can bear 
Thine eyes ! The stain is blotted from my name. 
I have redeem'd mine honour. I can call 
On France to sanction thy divine forgiveness ! 
Oh, joy ! — Oh, raptvu'e ! By the midnight watchfires 
Thus have I seen thee ! thus foretold this hour ! 
And 'midst the roar of battle, thus have heard 
The beating of thy heart against my own I / 

BEAUSEANT. /c^^-o /<^< ^ / 

Fool'd, duped, and triumph'd over in the hour 

Of mine own victory ! Curses on ye both ! 

May thorns be planted in the marriage-bed ! 

And love grow sour'd and blacken'd into hate, 

Such as the hate that gnaws me ! 

/ /^ 
DAMAS. ^ '- 

Curse away ! 

And let me tell thee, Beauseant, a wise proverb 

The Arabs have, — " Curses are like young chickens, 

{Solemnly.) And still come home to roost I" 

BEAUSEANT. 

Their happiness 
Maddens my soul ! I am powerless and revengeless ! r<r<^^ ^^ (? 

(To MADAME.) 

I wish you joy ! Ha ! ha ! The gardener's son ! {Exit. {^ -^ 



70 THE LADY OF LYONS. [act v 

DAMAS {to GLAVIS). 

Your friend intends to hang himself I Methinks 
You ought to be his travelling companion ! 

GLAVIS. 

Sir, you are exceedingly obliging ! [Exit. /. ^ 

PAULINE. <? 

Oh! 
My father, you are saved, — and by my husband ! 
Ah, blessed hour ! 

MELNOTTE. C 

Yet you weep still, Pauline ' 

PAULINE. 

But on thy breast ! — these tears are sweet and holy 1 

MONS. DESCHAP 

You have won love and honour nobly. Sir ! 
Take her j — be happy both ! 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

I'm all astonish'dl 
Who, then, is Colonel Morier ? 

DAMAS. 

You behold him 1 

MELNOTTE. 

Morier no more after this happy day ! 

I would not bear again my father's name 

Till I could deem it spotless ! The hour's come ! 

Heaven smiled on Conscience ! As the soldier rose 

From rank to rank, how sacred was the fame 

That cancell'd crime, and raised him nearer thee ! 

MADAME DESCHAP. 

A colonel and a hero ! Well, that's something ? 
He's wondrously improved ! I wish you joy, S'j: ! 

MELNOTTE. 

Ah ! the same love that tempts us into sin. 
If it be true love, works out its redemption ; 
And he who seeks repentance for the Past 
Should woo the Angel Virtue in the future ! 



THE END. 



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